Praising Points

International studies have shown that praise definitely increases people’s inner interest in activities. Anything too much or too little is proven ineffective. Too much praise is ineffective because it comes too easy and often reduces the value of praise. Too little of it and lack of consistency do not give it much significance, as well. Here are some keywords to remember when giving praise:

  • Immediate. Praise kids right after the good behavior occurs. This way, they know instantly which behavior is reinforced.
  • Specific. Say exactly which behavior, action, or words you liked. For example, “Thank you for putting your toys back in the bin,” or “I like the way you shared your toys with your friends.” If the action was partly wrong, focus only on the positive side.
  • Frequent. Be consistent in saying words of praise every time kids do something good. Do not let any good or improved deed pass unnoticed. This reminds kids, positively, that a particular behavior should be part of their way of life.
  • Sincere. Put emphasis on the feelings and values instead of judging kids as “good” or “bad”. For example, if you see your child politely asking for his or her turn in playing a video game, say, “I like the way you asked your brother if you could play after him. I think that was a polite thing to do.”
  • Varied. Use different praise statements. Repeating the same thing may lose its impact and value. Changing it is also one way to increase kidsemotional vocabulary, which will help them express themselves as they grow.


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