The day is almost over. The kids have finished their homework as last batch of cookies are baking in the oven. All that remains is to tuck them safely away and go to bed. What is it that you have been wanting to tell your child, but they seem too busy as they prepare for bed? It is this; you have been wanting to tell them how proud you are of them, how fortunate they are to have such caring parents and how much you appreciate how hard they have worked all year.
It seems your child has put in their own efforts all year, they have pieced everything together into one very beautiful big loaf of bread. As you begin to slice away, it 'feels' like your child is being thanked for all their efforts.
This is what you are experiencing as you try to remember how to tell them. How many times have you been wanting to tell your child, but found yourself at a loss on how to say it?
Some parents tend to be overly involved and find it hard to remember how to tell their child it was their efforts all year that earned them a special recipe from their teacher at the end of the year. They feel as if what they are about to receive is somehow not real. They might even have to wait for a year to tell their child - as they are overly concerned with the work they have done.
Other parents, however, have no such problem saying how grateful they are for their child's efforts all year. They have no hesitation in telling their child it was their efforts all year that earned them a special recipe from the teacher at the end of the year.
Why is it that some parents find it hard to thank their child for their efforts?
To begin, it can be difficult for some parents to remember the efforts that their children have put in all year. I hear parents say things like, "I'm so grateful to you for coming home and helping me with my homework every night," or "It was great of you to take the garbage out every evening," or "It was great of you to do your chores without complaining." Some parents are not sure how to express how grateful they are for all their efforts.
Parents should be positive in their praise. Negative feedback will often make the child feel as if they have not worked hard enough and may possibly send them into a defensive position. On the other hand, parents should praise their child on every accomplishment. Positive feedback will encourage the child to try harder the next time.
Your child needs to know how much their efforts have been worth. It could be something as simple as saying "thank you" in the form of a kiss, or a special treat like a trip to the zoo. Parents can get creative with what reward they can provide.
Children, especially teenagers, should know that their efforts are appreciated. And, at the end of the day, their effort is worth the prize. This will encourage them to keep trying harder, to help out around the house, and just enjoy life in general.
I hope this article has helped you to be more appreciative of your child's hard work.