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OT: 7 Things Every Parent Can Do to Raise an Extraordinary Person

Posted by on Jun. 16, 2014 at 9:43 AM
  • 5 Replies

7 Things Every Parent Can Do to Raise an Extraordinary Person

by Adriana Velez 

strong kids

As parents, most of us want to provide our children with everything they need. We want our children to grow up healthy, happy, well-adjusted, loving. And on those rare moments when we get to sit back and contemplate our higher goals as parents, we have to admit: We also want to raise extraordinary people. I do, anyway.

How do you raise someone to become a leader, to change the world for the better, to help others? Are competitive schools and expensive classes the answer (please say no)? Well, we talked with Dr. Tovah P. Klein, author of How Toddlers Thrive: What Parents Can Do Today for Children Ages 2 to 5 to Plant the Seeds of Lifelong Success, to get some advice on raising an extraordinary child.

1. Give your child a sound emotional base. "Your job as a parent is to love and accept your child for who they are," Dr. Klein says. Even as you set limits for them, a child needs to feel loved through every emotion they have and through any behavior.

2. Never shame your child. Avoid giving your child the message that they or their ideas are bad, especially with younger children. 

3. Don't micromanage or try to control your child. For example, if your child chooses to dress herself in mismatched clothing, just go with it. Otherwise, you're sending her the message that "your own initiatives and decisions are not good," Dr. Klein says.

raising extraordinary kids4. Avoid constantly correcting your child. For example, if they put together a puzzle the "wrong" way, hold back from telling them they've done it wrong. Let them experiment and imagine a world where there is more than one right answer, more than one way to do something. "That's how you get kids to think outside the box," Klein says.

5. Think of learning as a series of experiments, not a series of tests. "Young children don't define mistakes the way we do," Dr. Klein says. "For them it's all just a part of the process." For a child, if something doesn't work, it's an opportunity to learn and try again. Allowing your child to figure this out on their own teaches them flexibility.

6. Give children opportunities for engaged play, not just unstructured play. Kids need time to play in the outdoor world in whatever way they choose to. Let them discover things for themselves. This is how you nurture a creative and innovative thinker.

7. Teach your child emotional resilience. "It's not our job to make our children happy," Dr. Klein says. "It's to help them understand how to work through the hard emotions." Don't negate a child's feelings of sadness, disappointment, frustration, or fear, or tell them that they shouldn't have those feelings. Instead, help them recognize those feelings and deal with them. That's how they learn how to handle the adversities of life. "And that's how you'll raise a truly extraordinary human being," Dr. Klein says. 

Are any of these tips a surprise to you? Are you doing any of these things already?

by on Jun. 16, 2014 at 9:43 AM
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coala
by Silver Member on Jun. 16, 2014 at 11:54 AM

4. Avoid constantly correcting your child. For example, if they put together a puzzle the "wrong" way, hold back from telling them they've done it wrong. Let them experiment and imagine a world where there is more than one right answer, more than one way to do something. "That's how you get kids to think outside the box," Klein says.

I completely disagree with this statement.  There are many many times I send my children back in to change because what they have chosen is in appropriate for a multitude of reasons....including weather and not matching.  I am trying to teach my children how to do things in an appropriate way and mismatching your clothing is unacceptable to me.

bluerooffarm
by Gold Member on Jun. 16, 2014 at 1:19 PM


Quoting coala:

4. Avoid constantly correcting your child. For example, if they put together a puzzle the "wrong" way, hold back from telling them they've done it wrong. Let them experiment and imagine a world where there is more than one right answer, more than one way to do something. "That's how you get kids to think outside the box," Klein says.

I completely disagree with this statement.  There are many many times I send my children back in to change because what they have chosen is in appropriate for a multitude of reasons....including weather and not matching.  I am trying to teach my children how to do things in an appropriate way and mismatching your clothing is unacceptable to me.

I think the word "constantly" is the point here.  There are parents who are far too critical of their children continually pointing out imperfections.  A friend of mine never gives a compliment that stands alone.  She always begins with a criticism no matter how slight.  For example her son was making mountain pies with us and she constantly criticized what he was doing to the pie that HE was going to eat.  Too much sauce--it'll soak through, not enough butter--it will stick, it's going to be messy for the next person who uses the iron, your face is so sloppy, use a napkin, don't throw the napkin into the fire.  It was driving me nuts listening to her.  

ablackdolphin
by Bronze Member on Jun. 16, 2014 at 2:33 PM

I would add consistent discipline between all caregivers. 

coala
by Silver Member on Jun. 16, 2014 at 3:41 PM
1 mom liked this

I understand....the word constantly is key here.  I prefer to do compliment sandwiches....compliment, constructive criticism, and then another compliment.

Quoting bluerooffarm:

Quoting coala:

4. Avoid constantly correcting your child. For example, if they put together a puzzle the "wrong" way, hold back from telling them they've done it wrong. Let them experiment and imagine a world where there is more than one right answer, more than one way to do something. "That's how you get kids to think outside the box," Klein says.

I completely disagree with this statement.  There are many many times I send my children back in to change because what they have chosen is in appropriate for a multitude of reasons....including weather and not matching.  I am trying to teach my children how to do things in an appropriate way and mismatching your clothing is unacceptable to me.

I think the word "constantly" is the point here.  There are parents who are far too critical of their children continually pointing out imperfections.  A friend of mine never gives a compliment that stands alone.  She always begins with a criticism no matter how slight.  For example her son was making mountain pies with us and she constantly criticized what he was doing to the pie that HE was going to eat.  Too much sauce--it'll soak through, not enough butter--it will stick, it's going to be messy for the next person who uses the iron, your face is so sloppy, use a napkin, don't throw the napkin into the fire.  It was driving me nuts listening to her.  


Leissaintexas
by Bronze Member on Jun. 17, 2014 at 10:23 AM
I find it difficult to believe this article even needed to be written. Do people really not know this?
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