You can over-use praise and rewards to the point that children cannot hear constructive criticism. Their feelings get easily hurt and they don’t develop coping skills to manage disappointments.
Focus on their effort and attitude instead of results. Teach them ways to honestly appraise themselves. We parents lose credibility because we celebrate nearly everything they do. Tone down your evaluation of their performance so they trust you to give them accurate feedback.
Consider these phrases that focus on the “process” and not the “product”:
You worked really hard on that project; you deserve to feel good about it.
You didn’t get the grade you wanted this time, but you had a really good attitude about preparing for the test.
Children will have higher standards and more satisfaction if they judge their own performance. Keep your comments short! If they have a different opinion, don’t try to convince them, accept it and move on.
Just do the best you can, Claudia
Join me on Facebook at Dr. Claudia McCulloch