No parent wants to see their child struggle with confidence at school. Whether your child suffers with embarrassment from low grades or lacks the friends and associates necessary to feel loved, as a parent you can and should help your child feel more confident at school. There are things that you can do at home to encourage your son or daughter to be comfortable with who they are and gain confidence in everything they do.
Always provide your child with positive reinforcement. It can be damaging to a child to hear disapproving words from a parent. If your son or daughter deliberately does something wrong or makes a truly dangerous mistake, gently but firmly correct the behavior. But if the mistake is small and insignificant, suggest areas for improvement to your child in a gentle way that will not be embarrassing. More than anything though, give your child positive feedback on the things they do. It can be as simple as complimenting their outfit or laughing at a new joke that they learned. No matter what, do everything you can to show that you are proud of your child no matter what he or she does.
You can hardly expect your child to be confident if you don’t set the example of having confidence in yourself. Show that you believe in your abilities and you will see your child doing the same. If you act insecure or afraid of rejection every time you do something, it definitely won’t go unnoticed. Children base so much of their own behavior on their parents and confidence is no exception.
Encourage your child in every pursuit that they have. If they have an interest, support them wholeheartedly in what they love. Don’t focus on just one thing that they are good at though. Encourage a variety of activities that your child can succeed in. If you limit your encouragement, your child will feel limited in their abilities. They might also feel labeled by that one activity and like you are pressuring them to be successful at it.
For example, if your daughter is good at dance and you only praise her for her dancing, she may think that all you want is for her to be a better dancer. She will label herself as a dancer and not pursue any other interests because she believes that dance is all that she is good at. But if you were to encourage your daughter to try writing, you might find that this is something she enjoys just as much. Show your child that you believe in them and they will start to as well.
If you really want your child to feel more confident in school, become involved in their school work. Volunteer in the classroom, help with homework, or diligently attend parent-teacher conferences to show your child that you are invested in their life. Just the extra involvement will speak volumes about how much you care.
At the end of the day, have your child teach you something special that they learned that day. As they are teaching, don’t just act interested – actually be interested! By teaching you, your child will come to find that they actually understand something even better than they thought. This also gives you an excellent opportunity to provide them with plenty of praise and positive reinforcement.
Help Them/Teach Them
If you fear that your child lacks confidence because they lack friends and solid relationships, teach them how to go about making friends. For some children friendship comes very naturally but for others it takes some time and practice. Coordinate with other parents to set up safe environment play dates where your child can get to know their peers. Having that extra approval from other students will help your child feel better about what they are doing.
Your child’s confidence is not so hard to find. Help them dig deep to find what will give them that extra boost. Always encourage your child and regardless of whether or not you actually see them exhibit more confidence at school, you will at least see signs of better confidence in each other.
Veronica Mason has worked as an academic adviser since graduating from Washington University in St. Louis with a degree in education. She enjoys many hobbies including tennis, reading, and jigsaw puzzles.