Tag Archives: parenting

The Incredible Power of Praise

presented by the ceo, matthew gray

Every time we interact with our children, we create a bond of love and nit the relationship with our children, the way parents speak and the words they say to them stay with them forever and creates a lifelong impression on the child.

A growing number of parents are aware about the impacts of their words leave on the children. A large number of population of parents have understood the importance of praise and have adopted to praise and motivate their children, yet the is lot more to the technique of praising children, it is not only to say ‘Wow you did a good job!’. It is the amount of praise and the way we appreciate them makes a huge difference and brings a massive difference on how they behave and deliver the best results.

Below are outlined some of  the basic and most common scenarios to praise and appreciate children and also outlining best way of communicating, that helps the little child to not only feel proud and confident about themselves but also gives them deeper understanding about their strengths and weakness.

Scenario 1:

General praise: Wow, you are  excellent at maths!

Impact: The idea that creeps into the child’s mind, through general praise maybe that he/she is excellent at maths, and do not need to focus or maybe not pay further attention in maths. These kinds of open ended sentences can maybe misleading or sometimes damaging to a child’s future ability in any particular subject.

Descriptive praise: I have noticed you have been working out hard to work out the right answers, to these problems, you have greatly improved your skills in maths.

 

Scenario 2:

General praise: You were being really amazing today!

Impact: makes a child to be self obsessed and overstating his/her own abilities. Does not give specific information on what they did well and how to repeat the good action again.

Descriptive praise: I really liked that you shared your toys with your friends and siblings, I can see that you are getting more responsible and caring, I am so happy about it.

 

Scenario 3:

General praise: You are quite active, You will be winning all the competitions on the sports day!

Impact: These praises might negatively effect the moral of children, when they do not win, and make them weak and morally vulnerable in the event of failure.

Descriptive praise: On most of the practice sessions you had a good concentration, which meant you could run fast than last time, well done!

 

Scenario 4:

General praise: You are a superstar in the class!

Impact:These praises can excessively boost moral of the child and may also lead to behavioural issues, as for little children are not completely experienced to handle vague and bogus talks. These praises also don’t give specifics to a child on his/her areas of improvements.

Descriptive praise: You pronounced the words clearly having a constant smile on your face and facing towards the audience, you looked very excited saying your lines. I loved to watch your performance.

 

Scenario 5:

General Praise: You could be an excellent painter when you grow up!

Impact: Doesn’t focus on efforts and present abilities of a child.

Descriptive praise:  You seem to have good knowledge about the colours and canvas, would you show me how to mix, these colours?

It is important that parents and carers are mindful of their praises and the idea they convey through their words. A descriptive praise is often more useful as it gives more understanding of the family values and rules, and gives children greater understanding of their weakness and areas of improvements. Descriptive praises are a powerful tool to help children become willing to accept failure and stand back up for a new challenge.

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

The Little Girl, whole day at nursery

I am a parent and I totally understand how it feels, when we part away from our children, even for a brief moment.
I wonder, how the little children feel when they see us going. I express, the feeling of a little girl and the words I saw in her eyes, who stays at nursery whole day away from “Mom”, through this short poem.

When I see the whole world, I find you away not with me Mom.
When I see kids playing with their Mums, I am constantly searching you Mom.
I have my fears Mummy, I feel I am not so strong.
I see my friends jumping with their mums,
I sit aside juggling with my big fears in my little eyes.
I wish you were with me on a Monday morning,
Sitting in the park, we would play hide and seek.
I seek you mother everyday, let’s not play this peeka-boo every morning until evening,
Live with me mummy! Soon I will not be here waiting to see you.
image

Sujata’s printing imagination for word press

The change Game

Today at the Mastermind Training, I played this wonderful Game, where a person narrates a story and each time the word “change” is shouted out, the narrator has to completely change the theme of the story and continue with a new background. The activity seemed easy, however when I was actually narrating one, it was a complete mind googling experience.
On my way back, from the training, I was thinking about myself and my response to changes, and changes that have occurred in my life. I would always, cling on to my comfort zone, as most of us do.

However change is inevitable, life evolves, irrespective if you wish to or not. Changing cities, getting married, quitting job, relocating and being a parent, all are significant changes that took place in my life. And the greatest of all which I hated was relocating cities and parting from family and friends. Anyone and everyone who knew me since my childhood is certainly aware of my clinging behavior, and how much I hated moving cities and waying bye.

But, today I am a changed person, the sand beneath my feet feels eroding, but it doesn’t shakes me enough.
What is it that has changed inside me? Why I don’t feel the pain anymore? When I change cities, move away from my friends? I don’t shred a tear!! Instead I m prepared, I am happy.
image

Well to pen down my thoughts, it is a clear vision of a “Better Life”.
Novelty is the course of life, anything that does not flow, renews along the course and adapts to the pace of time will become rotten. If we stick, to present and hold on, nothing will blossom.

For the ” Better Life “, the clear picture, that is what I see, when we move cities, change homes, part from our family and go miles away from them. These distances are actually the stepping stones for a better future for me and for me to be able to provide better living for my loved ones.

So, now whenever, I encounter departure, I believe it must be celebrated and welcomed instead of wept for. Because departure is the beginning of a new story, and not the end of the previous one.

Sujata’s printing imagination for word press

5 pretend plays you must let your boys play

As parents and care takers when we think of pretend plays, we immediately categorize our children as girls and boys and then define boundaries for pretend play. These boundaries when planted in childhood get so strong that the little ones can never do away with them.
Pretend plays are kids way of living the adult world. Let’s open a universe of pretend plays for our little boys. The following pretend play for a complete development.

1. Cooking
When ever we think of pretend play and quickly categorise our children into girls and boys and draw huge boundaries for our kids and refrain boys into the kitchen premises. Cooking is an activity through which we are capable of feeding ourselves and bring peace to mind and body. Every child must learn skills to satisfy the basic needs of life irrespective of their gender.
image

2. Clean up
Living in a clean environment is vital for good health and life long prosperity, this can only be achieved when every child learns to clean up their own mess every time they play or spill around. The idea behind is to have a cleaner kid to have a cleaner planet. Having good clean up habits will ensure independent clean life long living.

image

3. Arranging things
Involving your little boys in stacking  keeping and arranging things in order leads to an amazing logical thinking. Calculating and measuring the space with sizes and shapes. These skills every child must be capable of doing by the age of 5 and boys should also have their hands on this one. By doing little stacking at home.
image

4. Negotiations
Like the above stated roles parents of boys must question and challenge the views of their boys instead of accepting this words as final verdict only in the grounds of being a male child. He must be encouraged to negotiate which provides a fair opportunity to boys to learn to validate and justify their opinions. Else in future he will always be short of words to talk things out. This is a life skills which will come handy in all walks or life ranging from corporate jobs to having a healthy married life.
image

5. Taking care
Being loved is a basic human requirement. Pretending to play as caring nurse, will not hamper his image or destroy his ego of a being a male. Learning to take care of his toys and expressing love and concern will help him grow into a loving a respecting male, rest assured these plays will make him more human.

Cast of the social transcend image and let’s nurture his childhood.

Sujata’s printing imagination for word press

Girls who lost their core competencies

When I flip back the pages of my life, I remember the remarkable pride I felt about myself of being educated and my universe was complete after having a job. However today I realize i was just another girl in the loosing generation of India.
Who are the loosing generation? What are we loosing and missing out??

So, let me take up an example to elaborate. How absurd does it sounds when one compares apples and oranges and say ” both are equal”. Wired isn’t it? So how does the “Modern” Indian society comes up with this though and says “both boys and girls are equal?”. To underline this statement it does not imply any form of superiority to either. In context to this article, neither the boy is more superior nor the girls inferior.
However the population born in the late 90’s was feed with various complex mind blocks, in specific the middle class girl child. She was trained to participate in a marathon to be more similar to boys. Being able to drive cars and doing jobs. Nothing more. And the basic jobs which our mothers did as carers were being regarded as unworthy and useless. Therefore no emphasis was ever laid by the mother generation to transfer skills of cooking, stitching, knitting, crafting. But these are some of the important life skills which enhance creativity, rational thinking, management skills.

Wait a moment, why there is emphasis of the girls being left behind and not the boys? Because boys are taught to be boys. Boys in this generation lead the girls they manage to improve on their core competencies of basic tool handling, driving, getting to work, and practicing a hobby or a sport. To win over us, this generation boys also started venturing into our core roles of cooking and parenting.

Now to answer the question why and how are girls loosing in competencies if they are not cooking, knitting, creativity, practicing hobby and sport? The reasons are simple, I shall explain in the following contexts
Some task of cooking, home management and creativity were degraded as why would only the girl do? Negated.
image

And the remaining activities of hobby and sport were removed from our list because we are a part of a conservative reforming society which swings to and fro between modernizing and traditions and restricts girls to play a sport and express oneself.

image

So the poor girls on one hand no value to their skill set and on the other hand has no option to learn only because she’s a girl. The parent generation takes superior pride in having daughters educated and manage to get jobs, however they should also take responsibility for not being able to understand the effects of robbing away the opportunities to teach the core skills of being a girl. Which caused a huge loss of learning and development opportunities for our girl generation.

And to back it up with some fact it is only the Indian middle class girls who suffers, as compared to our counter parts in world over. These mothers take pride in imparting the knowledge of home management, as each one of their daughters do well not only in academics but are also master in some sort of arts, which is an aid for independent survival.

I write this article to lay emphasis to my loosing generation to take pride to in doing all the activities which are categorized for girls and makes you more feminine, which is a celebration of being oneself.

Therefore let’s be aware about the loss we are suffering and not increase its impact on the next generation and not feed the same rigid thought to our daughters and offer a deprived childhood. And train them to be losers and dependent on maids, cooks, laundry, tailor only because the whole social system is on a roller coaster of living like a Boy.

Sujata’s printing imagination for word press

The concept of giving choices and making decisions – a toddler’s way.

 


In my recent understanding and learning about being a parent, who has to nurture a child to bring out the best in him as a human being. The actions and roles played by the parents from the day one of being a parent really goes a long way in forming the character of the human being the child will grow up to be.

I recently read a few lines maybe a flyer at a nursery visit, which kept me wondering over and over again. I shall also give the meaning of few words to give a clear understanding of the lines. Which states as follows:

If a child lives with ……

1. Criticism he learns to condemn ( express complete disapproval).

2. Hostility ( unfriendliness or opposition) he learns to fight.

3. Fear, he learns to be apprehensive ( anxious or fearful that something wrong will happen)

4. Jealousy, he learns to be guilty ( responsible for wrong doing)

5. Tolerance ( willingness to tolerate the existence of options), he learns to be  patient

6. Encouragement, he learns to be confident (Sure)

7. Praise, he learns to be appreciative (showing gratitude or pleasure)

8. Acceptance ( the art of believing, a positive welcome), he learns to love

9. Approval ( the belief that someone or something is good), he learns to like himself

10. Recognition ( attention or reward ), good to have a goal.

11. Honesty ( sincerity or frankness), he learns what is truth,

12. Fairness ( exhibiting a disposition that is free of favoritism), he learns justice

13. Security, he learns to trust (to place confidence/depend on)

14. Friendliness ( warm, comforting), he learns the world is a nice place to live.

Having learnt this about child physiology and the impacts of various actions they have on childs behaviour. I adopted a few changes and made my actions a little different for the desired results. And therefore, I started talking about giving options/making decision that could be base on the rules of developing confidence, appreciation, goals.

I slowly changed my actions and words rather than just simple let’s leave for home now!, which may sound more demanding and gives a feeling of ” No, more playing” or ” you have done nothing good”. And which may lead to being apprehensive and condemn respectively.  Which will lead to sure results  of disapproval and no result situation. Now i shall say ” let’s leave for home and then you will have a better chance of playing with Mickey”. Which gives the feeling of recognition and also builds the moods for a new play i.e a new goal to look forward and the desired result is a win win situation. However being a child is not an easy thing, as the tiny little brain may not be able to understand everything and he may say a plain “No”., “I don’t want to do it”.

Caution! Dear mommy don’t get in to the “No” negotiations any you start saying ” No baby it’s time to go home, No more sweets”. You are only teaching more ways to say No. Use the act of giving choices and empowering as a handy tool. Start explaining and talking about doing things at home with Mickey or other activities which sound interesting and leads to engage the tiny little brain to imagine, think and be mesmerised and approve the idea which excites the most and follows the way back to home.

Hurray! You have achieved 2 goals as a parent you have not only made him go back home and however on the way to the process you have also tickled a little bit of tiny thinking and imagination.

In the long run as parents we have to train ourselves to train our children in their behavior. Most cases parenting is not a subject( which is the most powerful tool to shape the future of the world) which we learn at school like maths or science and know the basics rules to get the results. Therefore new parents wander from situation to situation and follow techniques which are predominantly prevailing in the family, society or among friends. Like all hit and tries some are good and some really bad.

The more the child is exposed to giving options and choices and making decisions at an early age and continue doing the same in the future, the child learns to enhance the power of thinking and take control and be more satisfied and confident. And then they are capable of thinking and looking out for options in dead lock situations future in life.

Do you remember any situation in your life, when you faced deadlock situations? How did you feel? Sometimes we do not approve the actions of our friends, maybe your bosses’ order, your teacher’s word or any situation like missing the bus, or no food at home, and many more. Many of us may feel anxious, worried or maybe so disappointed that we may not want to find a way out and just blame. And the empowered ones, who have the training of a leader since childhood of finding options will think imagine about various options of over coming the situation which looks like a dead lock to others. These people in some cases may not even experience anxiety or disapproval. Since the brain is trained to take control and exercise options/choices and making decisions.

Think about it every time you talk to yu little one. What a small tool of asking is leading in the big picture. Consider this idea as an option.