Sunday, June 14, 2015

14 strategies parents need to know - 1. Parents: Look for Improvement, Not Perfection

14 strategies parents need to know

1. Parents: Look for Improvement, Not Perfection

Let's face it, perfection is an unrealistic expectation, and children would rather not try at all than experience constant discouragement because they don't live up to an adult's expectation of perfection—or their own. Recognition of improvement is encouraging and inspires children to continue their efforts.

A Story from Jane Nelsen: Mrs. Goel's son Arjuna was getting into trouble at school. His teacher was punishing him by having him write fifty sentences every time he misbehaved by talking or being disruptive. Arjuna would refuse to do the sentences—so his teacher would double the number. Mrs. Goel started lecturing and scolding him. Arjuna rebelled further by acting like he didn't care, and that he hated school.

Finally, during a parent-teacher conference, Mrs. Goel asked what percentage of Arjuna's behavior was "bad." The teacher answered, "About fifteen percent." She was amazed to realize the negative reputation Arjuna was getting (and living up to) because more attention was being paid to his 15 percent misbehavior than to his 85 percent good behavior.

During another conference, with Arjuna present, they all agreed that every time he was disruptive or disrespectful in class, he would make up for it by doing something to contribute, such as doing tasks for the teacher, or tutoring another student who needed help. Arjuna's misbehavior was thus redirected into contributing behavior, and he had very few classroom problems after that.

Working for improvement, instead of expecting perfection, this teacher began having class meetings, so problems that did occur were solved by the class as a whole. He learned that it is encouraging to children and to parents when we focus our attention on the positive rather than the negative and redirect misbehavior into productive efforts.



Guided by Positive Discipline, these children of Mauritius are developing healthy self-esteem, competence, significance, self-control, inner security and problem-solving skills that will be the foundation for fulfilling their dharma and facing their karma all through life