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Do you 'praise' your children. Why or why not?

I have always thought of praise as a very good thing, but I like things that challenge my beliefs. This article certainly did that-

So what do you think? Read the whole thing if you are going to make comments about the article PLEASE!

Answer Question

Asked by kjflaherty at 6:07 PM on Mar. 1, 2010 in General Parenting

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Answers (10)
  • New research is coming out that praising a kid for being 'naturally smart' or 'naturally gifted' is not helpful to them. It's better to praise a kid for trying hard, since effort and motivation is the single biggest advantage one can have. Current thinking is that the wave of attachement, 'you can do anything and are perfect'parenting in the 80's and 90's has resulted in a generation of adults unwilling to work hard for anything and who believe that they are naturally superior.

    Answer by danielp at 6:10 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • So I have gotten into the habit of praising my child for her hard work, rather than her natural smartness. Better to say 'good job, you tried so hard,' then 'good job, you're so smart.!" You can still praise, it's just the way you praise that should be different. I read about this in Nurture Shock.

    Answer by danielp at 6:11 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • i didnt read the article. but i do praise my daughter. she is 2 1/2 and when she finishes her meal she gets praised, i found if i show her its an awesome thing to do she'll want to do it more. as well as when she goes to her potty she gets praised or when she picks up her toys, etc. but she is still really young. when she becomes of school age getting good grades requires praise. children love to please their parents, if you show how proud ou are of them then you will get good behavior in return,.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:12 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • As a psych major praising children is very important. What we say, do, or how we react to our children is what makes them who they are later. A better study of kids who were told they were :bad" or "naughty" or other down things has shown that the kids grow up to be bad. So you see, how you treat your kids really matters. I praise mine every chance I get while still keeping a firm hand on the rules and keeping the bar raised to what is accepted and what is not.

    Answer by gemgem at 6:21 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • Yeah I am defeinatley a person who thrives on praise ... AND THIS IS NOT GOOD! I dont do much of anything unless its for an external reward. Money, a 'good job', etc. When really, I should do things because a.) they are the right thing and b.) because it makes me feel good.
    Anon - I think you should read the article, it is very intresting and talks about other ways to encourage your children to do the right thing, not because 'it makes mommy happy.' Its worth thinking about, IMO.

    Answer by kjflaherty at 6:22 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • I do, selectively. I think that if you constantly praise your child, it loses it's effectiveness and sincerity. When I was working, it bugged me when people told me "good job" for every little thing. It just sounded phony.

    Answer by indymom22 at 8:44 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • I love Alfie Kohn!! And no, I don't praise in the way that most people think of it. I do, however, share in my child's joy, excitement, etc.

    Answer by jessradtke at 9:15 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • Positive reinforcement has worked wonders for me and my children. They are 24,19,16,4 and 3. I have had great sucsess and will continue to do so.

    Answer by salexander at 9:31 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • As a pediatric therapist I do praise my child, but there is a balance. Not to over praise and not to be stingy handing out praise.  Jumping for joy over every little thing - no.  But when he accomplishes a new task or is proud of himself, I certainly join in his enthusiasm.  At three my little guy asked me if I was proud of him.  I told him, "everyday."  He is secure in my belief in him without having to have it every two seconds.  At the same time he needs occasional reassurance he is in the right direction.  Bottom line, it is your child.  Even as a therapist...I don't tell other people how to raise their children or how to respond to their child's needs.


    Answer by frogdawg at 10:43 PM on Mar. 1, 2010

  • I did read the article, and I do not agree with it. I have learned the importance of praise. We have a 4 year old daughter who has some very challenging behaviors. My husband and I attended a parenting class that was 12 weeks long several months ago, and what we learned was invaluable. We have seen a great improvement in our daughter's behaviors simply by 1. taking 20 minutes a day to give her our full undivided attention and PLAY with her and 2. giving her positive feedback in the form of praise. The class taught us that for every negative (no, stop, don't, etc.), you should use 5-7 positives (good job, way to go, I like how you ____, etc.). By using the praise so excessively, it has taught our daughter the behaviors we are seeking out of her. She now tries to please us, instead of constantly trying to irritate us. We can see her beam when she knows she has done something successfully.

    Answer by fiestagrill at 2:22 AM on Mar. 2, 2010

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