- About JEI
- JEI News
How parents can encourage their child toward excellence
Research has shown that parental encouragement is needed for any child’s success. The positive results include everything from excellent grades to can-do attitudes in the workplace. It can even boost elementary school students’ reading motivation and level! If you want to see your child thrive in school, their career, and life overall, you should encourage them as much as possible. However, parental encouragement isn’t as simple as it sounds. There’s a more effective way to lift up your child than telling them they’re smart or leaving them with a solid “You got this!” Here is how you can show up for your child in a way that encourages them to keep striving for more and better. Be Present The simplest way to be there for your child is to be there for them physically and emotionally. When they have a special event, attend it so they see your support. If they are stuck on their homework, try your best to help them. If they are feeling down or confused, hear them out so they can release those negative feelings. Being present, in turn, helps you figure out what they are good at, find joy in, and would like to pursue, so you can continue to encourage them in all those areas. Show that you are someone they can turn to in challenging times and rely on when they inevitably fall during their many trials and errors in life. Be Open Keeping an open mind is an important way to encourage your child. They are exploring and learning, and these are activities you want them to pursue for life. When they are contemplating a different activity they want to try out or career they want to explore, encourage them to give it a go instead of dissuading them. They are also learning to express themselves, so give them the freedom to do so, from how they dress to how they decorate their room. Being open-minded allows your child to experiment in life and discover who they are. In turn, they will be more confident, wise, and independent. Be Realistic While you should be open-minded about all that your child wants to pursue or accomplish, you should be realistic about your child’s capabilities. Having low expectations will make your child feel defeated, like there is no point in trying. Having high standards can make your child shrink from challenges because they fear failure. Instead, help them set achievable goals. Simply believing that they will do the best of their abilities will teach them that there is always room for improvement and that’s okay. This will encourage and motivate them to accept good enough for now while striving for better. The important thing is that they keep trying and harness the growth mindset. Be Positive Even with realistic expectations, there is always room for positive reinforcement! Pick them up when they fall, show that you see how hard they’re working, cheer on all their endeavors, and remind them constantly of their worth. You can do the last one by bringing up past examples of when they worked hard, whether they failed or succeeded. Erase their doubts by telling them that they can accomplish whatever they set their mind on with some help, practice, and time. Being positive includes being patient. A child will pick up on impatience and become disheartened. Show them that there is no rush for them to get to where they want to go. Be Rewarding Rewards are also great motivators. You can encourage your child by rewarding them not only for good results but also for good effort. The important thing, again, is that they try, so show that you see them trying and want to reward them for it. You can do this in a way that is productive and lasting. For example, do not reward them with toys or other material objects for the most part. Reward them with something meaningful and heartfelt. This can range from the mundane, like giving them a hearty hug or high five, to something special, like cooking them their favorite dinner or writing a letter about how proud you are of them. — There is nothing more powerful than a parent’s belief in their child and support for their aspirations. With your encouragement, your child can break past any obstacles to their infinite potential. We sincerely believe that every child, including yours, has untapped potential, and our programs and specialized instruction can further help them explore it. Our instructors and directors know how to encourage each and every child to learn in their own unique way through our JEI Self-Learning MethodⓇ. Encourage your child’s continued learning by enrolling them in one of our programs! They range from JEI English to Brain Safari, a special critical thinking program for young children. Contact us at 877-JEI-MATH to speak to a representative today.
Powerful women who inspire our youth to #ChooseToChallenge
Happy International Women’s Day! The theme this year is #ChooseToChallenge, so today we are highlighting and celebrating strong women who have paved the way for all the girls after them by challenging the status quo, particularly in male-dominated industries. We hope your daughters feel empowered by the examples these women have set so they can figure out how they #ChooseToChallenge the world and themselves. Here are some of the women who broke the glass ceiling in... POLITICS Former California Senator Kamala Harris challenged how it’s “always been done” by becoming the very first female Vice President of the United States earlier this year: “While I may be the first woman in this office. I will not be the last, because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities.” However, she wouldn’t have been able to do it without the women before her, either. Hattie Caraway became the first woman elected to the U.S. Senate in 1932: “I am going to fight for my place in the sun.” Madeleine Albright became the first female Secretary of State in 1997: “[T]here seems to be enough room in the world for mediocre men, but not for mediocre women, and we really have to work very, very hard.” Former First Lady and Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, became the first female presidential nominee of a major U.S. party in 2016: “It is past time for women to take their rightful place, side by side with men, in the rooms where the fates of peoples . . . are decided.” STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) Ann Preston is one of the biggest names when it comes to fighting for women’s rights to join a medical profession in the 1800s; she opened and became the first female dean of a medical school in the United States: “Wherever it is proper to introduce women as patients, there also is it but just … for women to appear as physicians and students.” Speaking of firsts, Karen Uhlenbeck became the very first woman to win the Abel Prize (the “Nobel Prize of math”) only in 2019: “I am aware of the fact that I am a role model for young women in mathematics. It's hard to be a role model, however, because what you really need to do is show students how imperfect people can be and still succeed . . . I may be a wonderful mathematician and famous because of it, but I'm also very human.” She also said the culture of the math community and harsh societal pressures negatively affect the advancement of women in math. This is the case not only in math but also in science. Katalin Karikó studied the therapeutic benefits of mRNA, insisting it could be used to fight disease, but no one would support her research. She was doubted and even demoted, but eventually she prevailed: her discovery became the basis of the COVID-19 vaccine. BUSINESS Madam C.J. Walker was born to former slaves but created an African-American hair care business that made her one of the first women to become self-made millionaires in the United States: “I am not satisfied in making money for myself. I endeavor to provide employment to hundreds of women of my race.” A famous name in fashion, Coco Chanel started by selling only women’s hats, moved on to create the first perfume (Chanel No. 5) to be sold worldwide, and ended with a fashion empire worth more than $160 million by the time she died: “My life didn't please me, so I created my life.” Sheryl Sandberg received her MBA from Harvard, wrote the best-selling book Lean In to help women personally and professionally, and as COO helped Facebook go from a $56 million loss in 2008 to $18.5 billion profit in 2019: “When you look at successful women, they have other women who have supported them, and they’ve gotten to where they are because of those women.” SPORTS Chloe Kim is a champion snowboarder who became the youngest gold medalist at the 2015 X Games, the first woman to participate in the halfpipe at the 2016 U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, the first woman ever to land back-to-back 1080s (three full revolutions in midair), and the youngest female gold medalist on the course when she won at the 2018 Olympics: “The one thing I learned is to just give everything a shot. You don't want to live in regret.” World-renowned tennis player Serena Williams won more Grand Slam singles titles (23 total) than any other woman or man: “The success of every woman should be the inspiration to another. We should raise each other up. Make sure you're very courageous: be strong, be extremely kind, and above all be humble.” Katie Sowers achieved many firsts, one of which includes being the first woman in NFL history, as the offensive assistant of the San Francisco 49ers, to coach in a Super Bowl: “Being the first female in the Super Bowl, it's surreal . . . even though I'm the first, the most important thing is I'm not the last and we continue to grow it.” — The glass ceiling can use even more cracks! Help your daughter join the ranks of these amazing women to change the world for the better. Education is one key aspect of achieving success, and we don’t mean just by getting good grades at school. We at JEI teach all of our students to pursue lifelong learning with curiosity and seek constant growth. Let us help your child soar toward their infinite potential through our personalized learning programs. With the JEI Self-Learning MethodⓇ, they can land on whatever career path they wish, whether their dream is to become the coach of a national team or the next President of the United States. Call us today at (877) JEI-MATH or visit a JEI Learning Center near you. Lastly, how will your child #ChooseToChallenge? Let us know with the #ChooseToChallenge pose on social media. Make sure to use the hashtag and tag us @jeilearningcenter on Instagram or @jeiglobal on Twitter!
Must-have skill for children #14: critical thinking
"Knowing a great deal is not the same as being smart; intelligence is not information alone but also judgment, the manner in which information is collected and used." - Carl Sagan Critical thinking is beyond learning facts and finding the right answer. It is the ability to analyze and understand various concepts and issues, and it is a must-have skill for children. They will use it to complete everyday tasks as adults, move up in their careers, solve problems, and make decisions big or small. Unfortunately, there may not be a direct focus on critical thinking in a traditional school setting, so it is up to you to make sure your child hones this skill and makes the best of their thinking capability. There are many ways that kids can practice their critical thinking skill, which is really made up of multiple smaller skills. These include analysis, interpretation, inference, explanation, and problem solving. When your child faces a problem, they should approach it with an open mind. This means exploring all possibilities, accepting that there may be more than one answer, asking questions, practicing trial and error, and making sure they tackle any assumptions that are blocking them from an understanding. However, all children could use assistance. Parents or guardians can help them exercise their critical thinking skills in a variety of ways. Ask the Right Questions There are a lot of different questions you could ask your child to foster critical thinking. One type is the open-ended question, which teaches them that there isn’t always one answer or solution. This also prods them to think outside the box and provide an answer that is not a simple yes or no. You can ask for thoughts, opinions, and clarification, too. When a child tries to explain something, like what they think or how they feel about a topic, they have to exercise their rational thinking to convey ideas in a way the other person can understand. Talking it out also allows them to clear up any confusions they may have. Take a Step Back Sometimes, less is more when it comes to parenting. Whether you’re asking them questions or helping your child with schoolwork, avoid pushing one specific method or answer. Instead, allow room for experimentation and healthy debate. Experimentation allows your child to reach their own conclusions in their unique ways, which is an exercise in critical thinking. As for healthy debates, be open to your child disagreeing with you. It can also help to not intervene right away when siblings are arguing but to guide them toward a resolution using sound reasoning. Make sure to give your child the space and opportunity to resolve their issues and solve problems on their own. Promote a Healthy Curiosity Another important point is to encourage their inquisitiveness, so they seek answers and ponder concepts on their own. This is a great opportunity to put previous tips into effect. For example, when they ask “Why?” you can respond with an open-ended question that encourages them to look for the answer themselves as well as seek more questions. Another example is when they seem interested in a particular topic. You can step back, giving them the full reigns to explore it all on their own instead of telling them what you know. Their curiosity will drive them toward independent, lifelong learning, which goes hand in hand with critical thinking. Provide Mental Exercises Introduce logic practices into their daily life through puzzles, games, and brain teasers. Chess is the archetypal logic game, but there are many others like checkers, Chinese checkers, and Go, all of which challenge the player to predict movements and strategize. This is why learning from gameplay is another must-have skill for children! Then, there are activities like Sudoku, rebus puzzles, mystery nights, and Escape Rooms. Another fun way to work on critical thinking is to build something together, like a robot or treehouse. There is no limit to how your child can apply their critical thinking skills. — For added help, look to none other than JEI Learning Center, which recognizes the importance of improving the overall cognitive abilities of our students. That’s why we have created unique programs like JEI Problem Solving Math and Brain Safari that challenge students to think outside of the box to solve the problems they face. Additionally, we share weekly brain teasers and host events and critical thinking workshops. We focus on how your child arrives at an answer and encourage creative thinking, fostering an eagerness to learn like no other learning center! Find a center near you and ask them about how these programs will boost your child’s critical thinking skills and motivation to learn.