Every Wednesday, I’ll post about multiple intelligences so we can better understand children and why they do what they do.
Let’s affirm children this summer. We can use our observational skills to catch them being smart and many other things. Not only will it encourage them and help them behave better during the summer, it will help them begin the next school year with an upbeat and optimistic spirit.
Look for what they’re doing right and point it out to them. And, remember that “because” is one of your power words. It reminds you to verbalize the proof that they are what you say they are.
If you just tell children they’re creative, outgoing, diligent, or smart without providing the evidence, they may not believe you. They may just assume you’re being nice or you have to say those things because you’re their parent, grandparent, or Sunday school teacher. Especially if they have an unhealthy view of themselves and/or have had a rough year, they won’t believe you. Your compliments won’t have the inspiring power they could have.
Remember, too, that “smart” is another power word. All children want to be smart and need to know how they are smart so they can behave in those ways. Many times, the thing you observe may be connected to a smart. When that’s the case, point it out. Children may not know.
What can we affirm in children? Here are some suggestions. What would you add to the list? Remember to often add the “because” statement. It might sound like this:
“You are . I know because I saw you .” Sometimes you’ll add something like, “It helps that you’re smart.”