By Angela Ardolino
When we send our kids off to school we know they’ll learn to read and write, add and subtract. Eventually they’ll grow up to learn more challenging content that will be necessary for their future. But is there more that schools can help instill in our kids that guarantees their success as adults?
The answer is yes. Although not a subject, teaching our children to be confident in who they are and what they believe can go a long way.
Starts At Home
The most fundamental basis of creating confident kids comes from praise and encouragement. And it starts at home. From infancy to young adulthood, confidence, according to KidsHealth.org, rises out of your kids feeling competent and gaining a “can do” attitude. Hearing praise from mom and dad on a regular basis is good, but the praise means much more when it refers to a specific effort or abilities like getting an A on a test or hitting a homerun at the softball game.
Tasks that take longer to learn, like tying shoes or riding a bike, need patience from parents, constant encouragement and good instruction. Before you know it, your kids will be confident that they can achieve any challenge put in front of them.
Building Confidence At School
When at school, building confidence is about making connections with teacher, administrators and other students. Your child’s teacher should make this a part of your child’s school experience. Your kids will also build confidence through the clubs, classes and organizations they participate in. These activities play the important role of building confidence by establishing individual and group goals and working together to accomplish them.
It’s also important that your student feels that they matter. That their feeling, tastes, ideas and contributions are important to their school and teachers. When teachers take time with each child, it sends a clear message that they’re important and what they have to say matters.
Why It’s Important
Raising confident kids is about raising children who know who they are and are eager to challenge themselves. Continuing the confidence building at school will help kids get beyond the “Why me?” lament in favor of the “Why not me?” attitude. Helping your child to shift their way of thinking about what they can do will produce life long results.
As parent, keep your eyes out for falling grades and erratic behavior. These can be key signs that your child is not receiving the attention they need to thrive at school. Reach out to the school and find out what programs and opportunities are available to your kids to spend more one-on-one time with teachers and other students.