I often wonder what the boundaries are when it comes to encouraging kids to excel. We’ve all seen the overzealous parent that can cause more harm than good. Then there are families out there that just let the kids make their own choices good or bad… kinda just let the cards fall where they may. I feel with my brood of 7 cherubs I need to find a balance of something in between. Yikes… me and balance? That’s a tough one 🙂
Encouraging Kids to Excel
Encouraging children to have a hobby or participate in an activity can have a dramatic impact on their behavior. Children who are working toward a goal can be more likely to develop motivation. They will also enjoy a feeling of confidence when their goal is achieved. There are plenty of ways that you can encourage children to set attainable goals that will help them develop learning and social skills. The key here is what is a positive goal that helps them to feel independent and builds their self-esteem.
Choose Hobbies That Your Child Enjoys
Helping a child choose a hobby can be a challenge. Children may want to choose hobbies simply because their friends are participating in them. Encourage children to choose hobbies that match their personal interests. Kids who pick hobbies based on what interests them will be more committed to their activity and reaching their goals. What’s great is they can try something and if it doesn’t work for them then they can try something else. We have a policy that if the kids sign up for something they complete the season, lessons or whatever the set up is. We don’t just let them quit; they try it, fulfill the requirement and then decide if they will continue. Letting them try new experiences is important. It’s also important that they learn to finish their commitments and not quit.
It is important that you recognize a child’s progress toward their goals. Many children are motivated by recognition, and recognition is an important part of helping a child feel validated. Children who receive positive recognition will feel compelled to continue progressing toward more challenging targets. Having a chart that tracks progress can be an ideal way to keep track of goals. For example, a chart can list a child’s name and certain benchmarks of achievement. When a goal is attained, then a gold star can be placed next to the goal. Or another reward system that meets their age and personality. This can continue until the child reaches their final plan. This goal chart can also help children who become frustrated while learning a new skill. There are so many things we can think of to encourage our kiddos, it’s a learning process for us as the adults in their lives as well as for them.
Children who practice their chosen activity or hobby will likely see improvement in their talents. Ask children about the progress that they are making, and gently remind them about their goals. There may be ways that you can help children succeed. For example, children who are pursuing musical ambitions may use music workbooks to learn performance pieces. An extra bit of commitment can result in an amazing performance. Through trials and tribulation our kids learn about the world we live in and more importantly about themselves. I can honestly tell you, I have personally learned so much about myself and my family through our trials and our victories.
It’s important to remember if your child becomes discouraged while pursuing a hobby, try to offer positive validation. Remind children of goals that they have accomplished. We can often become critical when things don’t go as planned. If we keep in mind that each of us is unique and our talents are different it will help us to remind our children of this as well.
What ways do you feel help our children to succeed? Have you learned valuable lessons through your children’s growing process?