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Building Confidence: Strategies to Boost Your Child’s Self-Esteem

It’s not always hard to tell when kids are happy with themselves. Self-esteem is the idea that you should feel good about yourself. Children who have high self-esteem are secure, liked, and accepted. They feel good about themselves and are proud of what they can do. Kids with low self-esteem are hard on themselves and don’t believe they can do well. These kids think about the times they mess up instead of the times they do well and feel like they’re not as good as other kids.

Why Self-Esteem Matters

Children who are happy with themselves are willing to try their best at new things. They’re proud of what they can do. Kids who have high self-esteem can also handle making mistakes. It makes them want to try again, even if the first time doesn’t work. Being proud of yourself can help kids do better at school, at home, and with their friends.

Kids who have low self-esteem don’t trust themselves. They might not join in if they think others won’t accept them. They might let bad things happen to them and find it hard to stand up for themselves. They might give up quickly or not try at all. It’s hard for kids with low self-esteem to handle failure, making mistakes, or losing. They might not do as well as they could.

What Makes a Child Have Low Self-Esteem?

Several factors can negatively affect a child’s self-esteem. This often includes feeling unsupported or criticized by significant figures in their lives, particularly their parents. When children do not feel valued or loved, they may begin to question their abilities and self-worth.

Strategies for Boosting Your Child’s Self-Esteem

Parents and caregivers at our preschool in Olney, MD want their kids to have a good self-image and feel good about themselves. From the time they are babies, your words and deeds have the most impact on them. Your child takes in everything you say and do, including how you talk and move.

Some kids can build their self-esteem faster than others. Whether the following strategies are used at home or an Olney preschool, they can help boost your child’s self-esteem.

Happy mother holding adorable baby boy.

Praise Them

Don’t just praise achievements or qualities. Instead, praise kids for their effort, growth, and attitude. For instance, “You’re putting in a lot of effort on that project,” “You’re doing better on these spelling tests,” or “I’m proud of you for practicing the piano—you’ve really stuck with it,” Kids work hard at things, set goals, and try when they get this kind of praise. They have a better chance of succeeding this way.

Be a Role Model

If you work hard at everyday things like cooking or cleaning, you show others how to do it. Your kid learns to work hard at things like making the bed, doing homework, and cleaning up their toys. It’s also important to show the right attitude. You teach your child how to do things without whining when you do them yourself. When you don’t rush through chores and are proud of a job well done, your child will do the same.

Don’t Be Critical

What other people say about them often affects how kids feel about themselves. Negative or harsh words don’t inspire kids and can make them feel bad about themselves. Be patient when you correct kids. Think about what you want them to do next time. When you have to, show them how.

Girl Baking With Mother In Kitchen

Let Them Make Choices

Kids feel better about themselves and more confident when they make their own age-appropriate decisions. Kids as young as two can start to think about what will happen if they make a choice. Giving kids the choice to wear a coat, hat, and gloves in the winter is a great model. They should be able to do it on their own once they know the difference between warm and cold. They should be in charge of their bodies and own up to the decisions they make.

Teach Them How to Do Things

Self-esteem can grow as a child learns new things, like how to read, dress, or ride a bike. At first, show and help to teach. Then, let the kids do what they can, even if they mess up. This is a very important part of building up your self-esteem. Make sure your kids can learn, try, and be proud of their accomplishments. It’s not too easy or too hard when you set new goals. They should always try their best, but you should tell them they don’t have to be perfect.

Encourage Healthy Friendships

Kids should learn that the best friends are kind and positive. They should stay away from people who are mean to others. Instead, they should pick friends who let them be themselves and who make them feel good about themselves. Help them be that kind of friend to other people.

girls hugging over yellow background

Pay Attention to What Goes Well

Kids may find it easy to think about what went wrong, like failing a test. So long as they don’t find some good in it, they’ll only feel bad. Your kids should talk about something good than something bad when complaining to you. Also, have your child tell you at least three good things that happened that day, every night before bed. Kids will soon start to see more good things in themselves and the people they know.

Encourage Them in Pursuing Their Interests

Encourage kids to do things they’re interested in, and then make sure they finish them. This is another safe way to boost their confidence. It doesn’t matter what the job is; it could be anything from swimming laps to beating game levels. The goal is for them to finish what they started so that they feel good about what they did.

Final Thoughts

Parents and caregivers at our preschool in Olney can help kids with low self-esteem feel better about themselves. Be a good example for your child to boost his or her self-esteem. Help kids get good at things so they can be proud of themselves. Reward hard work and avoid harsh comments. When you help kids feel good about themselves, you show them you value and care about them. They’ll also be brave enough to try new things and know what to do.

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