Here at Tartt’s, we foster the belief that each moment with your child is an opportunity to learn.
Whether you are a parent or an educator, you have most likely noticed that the phrase “Good Job” becomes mundane after saying it for the thousandth time. You may have even pondered if an alternative exists.
There are objective phrases we can use that encompass more meaning and support to benefit the growth and development of our children. It is a continuous and conscious effort, that will conduct a positive and worthwhile impact on the child’s self-esteem.
Using the Montessori approach, we are able to focus on the child’s process rather than the end result of their efforts. We can also offer positive reinforcement that allows the child to evaluate themselves rather than always be evaluated.
Encouragement vs. Praise
Praise is an automatic evaluation on the child’s efforts. “That’s Amazing!” “You’re the Best!” These words create the habit of the child seeking acknowledgement from others and may also create expectations for them. We want them to have confidence and know that they are capable of doing hard things.
Children naturally feel successful and they do not need us to reinforce that feeling.
Here are some examples:
“Sounds like that was challenging for you but you persevered.”
“I notice many details in your picture. Tell me about them.”
“You worked really hard on that!”
Instead of… Try this…
“You’re so smart” “How do you feel about that?”
“I love it!” “I can see the effort you put into it!”
“I am so proud of you!” “You must be very proud of yourself!”
“You are so helpful.” “I appreciate your help.”
“What a beautiful drawing!” “It looks like you enjoyed creating that!
“Thank you for cleaning.” “You cleaned up, everything looks so
nice and neat”
“The child, in fact, once they feel sure of themself, will no longer seek the approval of authority after every step.” Dr. Maria Montessori
By Marissa Zanoni