Can you praise children too much? I think you can. First, let’s distinguish between words of affection and words of praise. Affection focuses on who the child is, “I love you. You are so beautiful. I love the color of your hair.” These are words of affection. Praise focuses on what the child does–something over which the child has a degree of control. “Good catch. Great job.” These are words of praise. Children know when praise is deserved and when it is given simply to make them feel good. Random praise will come across as insincere. When you can’t praise the performance, praise the effort. “You worked hard at that, and I’m proud of you.” Certainly you want to praise your children, but make sure it is true and justified.
April 10, 2014