Language of Praise v/s Encouragement

We generally think that praising is good for the child, but the fact is, praises are often exaggerated and misleading for the child. If not directed very to the point to specific actions of the child that he has done well, it fills in her/ him, a sense of false pride and develops with time an over confident and often arrogant and careless attitude. Language of praise should be changed into language of encouragement. Language of encouragement means specific praise of the child’s specific actions, not the general praising. It is based on the premise of “you judging yourself and not me judging you”. Encouraging the child to judge his own work, in terms of his previous works is a good idea, where progress or regress in work over a period of time can be seen and understood by the child her/ himself. Self evaluation leads to intrinsic motivation and thus a need to compete with oneself and give her/ his best in every shot.

Children like rules and they like to stick to rules. Set class rules for children in consultation with them. Stick to rules and do follow the consequences set for not following the rules. Create a disciplined warm and caring school community where children feel free within the rules, without fear of reprimand and being told off: Talk to children with respect and kindness. Do not speak negative in public unless it applies to the group in whole. Focus on self realization: Pose the question often,” Do you think if it was correct? Develop the inner clock of wrong/right response within the child. To enable a child think and reflect aptly, give him time and opportunity to think and reflect.

Celebrate the mistakes of the child. A child should feel comfortable and confident while ideas. Insult feeling of pride in students. A child should look forward to come to school. He should take care of his thinks and maintain things beautifully.

These should be no infringement on the rights of others. Changing random rules are not healthy. Everthing must be rationalized for the child. Create a strong fortress within the freedom limits of a child. Nobody feels safe in a house with moving walls.

The Lakota have a beautiful way of edifying children. Theirs is a philosophy which I think every school and parent in the world could benefit from. In the Lakota language the word for child is wakan yeja, which translates as “sacred being”. Therefore, education of children was a sacred community duty. Elders were responsible for educating all children and the child’s inquiring nature was always respected with answers. Children learned by watching and imitating examples that they observed. At first children are cruel, greedy, impatient, self-centered, and uneducated, but they are not taught with force, as an animal. The Lakota distinguish two kinds of education: Kaonspe, which is by force, such as you teach a horse, and woksapa, which is learning by gradual adjustment. Children were not taught like horses. They were never physically beaten, nor were they treated as a nuisance to be gotten out of the way. They were only taught that they could do things and the thought of not being capable of doing.

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