[callout]Every Wednesday, I’ll post about multiple intelligences so we can better understand children and why they do what they do.[/callout]Let’s continue learning how we can increase our children’s confidence. On Monday, I wrote about spending time with children so they’ll feel significant, loved, special, and so many other things. When they feel these feelings, they’ll have beliefs about themselves that can give rise to confidence. And, they’re more likely to listen to us if we’re the ones who help them feel these ways.

When they listen to us we can also influence their beliefs about how they are smart. It’s not necessary or even appropriate that they think they’re smarter than someone else. But they must believe they’re smart. If they don’t, they’ll lack confidence. They’ll be less likely to try, study, take risks with new ideas, believe they can do what you ask them to do, etc.

So, open your eyes and ears and look for opportunities to affirm their smarts. Rather than just telling them they were nice, or they did something well, was there a smart involved? Giving them specific feedback about their intelligences will help them know how to approach other situations where they may have doubts. This will increase their confidence.

When you see them carefully carrying several things at once, tell them they’re body smart.

When you hear them humming or you see them lost in music, tell them you’re glad they’re music smart and can enjoy the peace and joy music can provide.

Catch them responding well to someone’s body language and tell them that being people smart will help them in all their relationships.

After they willingly read to a younger sibling, thank them and let them know you’re glad they’re word smart so they can encourage others.

When they study all the details in a picture, even if you’re frustrated by how long they spend on it, let them know you’re glad they’re picture smart and good thinkers with their eyes.

Because they helped you think through something and make a sensible plan, tell them you’re glad they’re logic smart.

After helping you in the yard, let them know you’re glad they’re nature smart. Remind them that that’s why they enjoy certain science topics.

When you know they’ve thought deeply about something and express their opinions well, let them know that being self smart is very important.

All children have all eight smarts. Ideally, you’ll catch your children using all eight so you can talk about all eight. That will be most helpful.