The Parent-Teacher-Child Connection: Born to Stand Out!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Born to Stand Out!

Why fit in when you were born to stand out? — Dr. Seuss

Do you encourage your children to fit in with the crowd?  Or do you encourage them to be individuals and stand out in a positive manner?  

Encouraging children to fit in helps them to be team players and get positive discipline reports in school.  However, fitting in also means that they are average players and average students. 

Encouraging them to be individuals can go two ways:  They will be strong, positive role models for other children in the family and in school.  Or they will be negative role models, extracting attention for inappropriate behavior.

Therefore, here are some ideas for encouraging positive behavior that will allow children to stand out in a crowd filled with positive influence:
  • Ignore inappropriate behavior unless it is life-threatening.  For example, if your child becomes loud and obnoxious, simply walk away from the behavior.  He won't get the attention he wants. I know this is difficult to do, but you'll be happy with the transformation in your child's behavior after a few weeks.  He'll understand that will and what won't get your attention.
  • Reward positive behavior in little ways by offering to color with your child or simply giving her a hug.  When you reward positive behavior in huge ways with money or trips to a store, you raise a little mercenary who won't do anything right unless she gets a reward for it.
  • Catch 'em being good!  The old theory of leaving well enough alone does not work for kids.  If they are quietly reading, simply sit next to your child with your own book.  He'll understand that what he's doing is good and acceptable.  
How do these suggestions help your child to stand out in a crowd?  Because he'll strive to get positive attention for positive behavior in any situation - school, sports, and beyond as an adult.  And that's exactly what all parents want for their children - responsible individuals at any age.

Happy parenting!

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