How do I praise my child? I can’t emphasize enough the magical powers of a praise. Just think how it feels when someone praises you; when you boss says “job well done,” or your spouse says how yummy dinner was or thank you for fixing the loose doorknob. Multiply the impact of a praise 10 times in the mind and emotions of a child. Children go to great lengths to get their parent’s attention. They will use good or bad behavior to accomplish this. It’s your job as a parent to use praise to increase their good behavior.
So lets talk about how to create a praise that gets the behavior you want. One way is the simple phrase; “good job,” or “I like how you minded so quickly.” Don’t believe the myth that you can praise your child too much. If you’re focusing on their BEHAVIOR, you won’t have a problem. Another way to look at praise is to use it as a means to turn an unwanted behavior into a wanted one. Try this: 1) Identify the unwanted behavior. For example little Johnny is grabbing toys away from his sister. 2) Think of the polar opposite of the unwanted behavior – think of the behavior you want. Hum, something like “I want Johnny to use his words when he wants to play with a toy his sister toys.” 3) Think of five ways to praise Johnny when he has good manners about using his words and sharing with his sister. For example: Thank you for talking nicely to your sister. Good job telling your sister that you want that toy. I like it when you are kind to your sister. Wow! You’re being so nice to your sister when you use your words. Nice job being kind to your sister! Be sure to be enthusiastic and real (avoiding sarcasm) when you use praises.