Wednesday April 27, 2011
Do you have a compliant child?
You know, the one who says, “Okay, Mom.” Oh, he has his occasional fits and tantrums, but on the average, this one is pretty obedient, conforming.
The easy child. (at least, relatively)
Here’s a hint for dealing with that child: praise him or her.
It’s easy to forget – after all, this is the easy child. There seems to be no need for pats on the back or encouragement toward obedience. So it’s easy to overlook.
But your compliant child needs praise. It’s too easy to overlook that need because he or she is usually conforming. It’s the rascal that needs encouragement for that rare moment of obedience – after all, you want to see it happen again, so you praise him up and down. The one who always obeys sometimes doesn’t hear your “Thanks, honey” or “I like the way you did that” because you expect that of him.
But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t need it. It’s easy, too, for this child to feel unappreciated. And just because a child doesn’t act up doesn’t mean he lacks a need for encouragement.
We forget how different out children are, how diverse their needs are. Once I had the parent of one of my students tell me, “My child thinks you don’t like him.” I was so surprised. He was a great kid – but a quiet one. I spent more time in the classroom with the rascals than I did with the good guy, but he needed some bolstering. I thought he was fine, but I soon learned he needed encouragement, a pat on the back. I took the opportunity to build him up, and I saw the difference immediately.
Listen to yourself today. Be sure you shower encouragement all over the place – even where it seems like it might not be needed.
A little encouragement goes a long way – and it never hurts!
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