Ten Powerful Things to Say to Your Kids Today!
Dream Enrichment Classes
Words are powerful. They can make a person feel, think, or behave in a certain way. The skill of effective communication is a critical tool for children to learn.
According to Paul Axtell, author of the Parenting.com article The 10 Most Powerful Things You Can Say to Your Kid, “what you say, how you say it, when you say it — is one of the only tools parents have in creating lasting and meaningful relationships with their kids.” Words can create a reality, and negative words can put a situation in a negative light. Knowing how to properly communicate what we want to say is powerful when teaching our kids healthy communication.
Here is Axtell’s list of 10 powerful things to say to children:
"I like you"
This is different from saying "I love you." Although telling a child you love them is important, stating that you like them says you like who they are as a person. Sometimes this statement can seem more personal.
"You're a fast learner"
Learning is a part of everyone’s life. Younger children find learning fascinating. When you communicate learning in a positive light, it can influence children’s perspective later when learning can be challenging or frustrating. Finding the right words to help them through a learning obstacle, or simply encouraging them along the way, can set the foundation to a healthy outlook on learning.
We all remind our little ones to say the magic words please and thank you. These simple words are a sign of respect. Having social skills are critical in life. By saying thank you to your child, they understand how good it feels to be appreciated.
"How about we agree to..."
It can be instinctual to simply say “no” and move on when we hear something we don’t like. By setting the stage for how you work together, offering compromises can show a child how to be flexible. Compromises can also avoid common or reoccurring problems, and teach them how to come up with solutions them self.
"Tell me more"
Being a good listener is a critical attribute to effective communication. Asking for more information allows you to learn about your child’s thoughts, feelings, and ideas.
Reading together turns learning into a group activity. Children love exploring things as a team. Reading opens the door to subjects from all around the world.
"We all make mistakes"
This is our favorite one! People make mistakes, it happens. Knowing this is ok and how to learn from a mistake is a lifelong skill we all need. If you find yourself making a mistake, verbalize what happened and share solutions you have thought of to get back on track. We teach mistakes are ok in all our STEM after-school programs. By coming up with alternative ways of achieving a goal, children develop creativity, problem solving skills, self-confidence, and critical thinking.
Saying sorry is not always easy, by learning the art of an apology can be weight lifting and bring people together. Saying “I’m Sorry” is a great communication tool for expressing understanding.
"What do you think?"
Asking for insight gives everyone a chance to be part of a conversation. Children can often feel overlooked. By asking what your child thinks, they learn the power of decision-making as well as the responsibility their choices hold.
Axtell states that developing a pattern of “yes” can lead or influence positive behavior. The more we find ways to “yes”, the more children learn what actions or requests lead to this positive phrase. Neuroscientist Andrew Newberg, M.D. and Prof. Mark Robert Waldman, authors of the book “Words Can Change Your Brain”, found that negativity, such as the word “no” leads to stress, causing a chemical reaction in the brain.
This is why when we teach our after-school STEM classes, we focus on communication. We encourage students to solve problems through asking the right questions. This strengthens and develops the critical thinking skills that help the brain function on a higher level. By not simply doing for a student, our communication bridges the gap to achieve results. How powerful are words? More powerful than words can describe. Our kids are always watching, listening, and copying what we say and do. By using communication, and these 10 powerful things to say, we can help our little ones achieve great things!
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