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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.