Monday, February 21, 2011

Constructive Criticism- Part 2

2. Focus on the Positive

The next time you see your child tonight, conduct a little expirament. Figure out something that you can compliment them on and make a sincere, genuine observation. Something as simple as "Jason, I just wanted you to know how much I appreciate that you put your dinner dishes in the dishwasher." Don't make it a big deal, but just make a simple comment. Over the next few days, I bet you'll notice that 'Jason' continues to put his dishes in the dishwasher. He might even wipe the sink off afterward! The point is just that people, particulary young people, really feed off of positive reinforcements. Although it may not seem like it, they want to make you happy.

In the case of academics, it's important to emphasize the positives before you bring up something that your child might consider 'negative'. For example, " I am really impressed with how well you focused while you were doing your math assignment. I can tell it's harder for you to do that during silent reading, so what do you think would help?"

Stay tuned for Part 3...Clarity!