Sat. Dec 3rd, 2022
How to give constructive criticism to children?

The way we communicate with our children greatly influences their psychological development, which includes their self-esteem.

Children who receive positive feedback, who are treated with respect and love, will develop a much healthier self-esteem than those who constantly receive negative or destructive criticism, especially from their parents.

Sometimes, during the parenting process, it is necessary to talk to our children about the things that are difficult for them, those in which they show difficulties.

But if we want to educate through respectful parenting, we must resort to constructive criticism, aimed at motivating our child and helping him improve in certain areas. But how do we do it? Before we get into it, let’s get to know what exactly constructive criticism is.

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What is constructive criticism?

Constructive criticism is defined as a ” judgment that is made in an informed and respectful manner to another person , in order to provide help or a positive view regarding a specific circumstance”.

In other words, their goal is to help someone, motivate them, encourage them to grow and improve, and never humiliate them or make them feel bad.

But what determines whether criticism is constructive or not? Among other things, the language we use to transmit it (the words), the tone of voice and the message itself. Check out more article at NYC Parenting Voice.

How to give constructive criticism

Some characteristics that can help us discover what constructive criticism is (and therefore, how we can make use of them in communicating with our children ), are:

  • Specific comments (not general) ; For example, constructive criticism would be to say “You seem to be having a harder time with math these past few days,” rather than “You’re not fit to pass math.” Is it not the same?
  • The tone, the way of speaking , must be respectful ; for example, instead of saying “you’re the worst in the class”, you can choose “don’t worry, what happens to you happens to many other children”. Oursite Piddlebabes has more artice for parenting.
  • Comments focused on the task , and not on the person. Thus, for example, instead of saying “you’re not good at anything”, he opts for “this subject is complicated and it’s normal that it’s hard for you, but the other subjects you are very good at”.

Other ideas that can help you give constructive criticism

Be aware of your language

We have seen how to give constructive criticism, in broad strokes, but we are going to dig a little deeper.

Something that can help us a lot is to become aware of our own language when we address our children (this includes verbal and non-verbal language ). And it is that, in communication, not only what we say matters, but how we say it.

Therefore, when you have to say something to your child, take care:

  • Tone of voice
  • body posture
  • speech speed

And above all, avoid speaking through judgment and criticism.

Turn to assertiveness

Assertiveness will be your best ally if you want to make constructive criticism of your children and never criticism that hurts them.

We talk about the ability to say things clearly and honestly , without hurting the other’s feelings. Will be interested to choose baby names for newborn?

Incorporate a positive element into your message

When making constructive criticism, it is important that we understand that one of its differences with harmful criticism is that the former highlight something positive about the person .

For example, if your child has a hard time being consistent with his studies , you can tell him so, but resorting, in turn, to something that he does well “…however, you always write things down in the agenda and that’s great.”

Identify the phrases you say when criticism appears

It is also essential that we identify what phrases we use when, unconsciously or in “autopilot” mode, we resort to criticism.

It’s not the same to say “although this time you didn’t do well on the exam, I’m sure the next one will be better”, than “you haven’t tried enough”, or “you’ve already gotten bad grades again”, etc.

The message matters a lot! Because on that message depends, in large part, how the child will receive the comment (whether as constructive or destructive criticism).

It is important that we observe our son’s behavior when we verbalize certain comments to him when we want to let him know that he could have done things differently, for example (or when we want to pass on another constructive criticism? How do they affect him? Does he get tense? quiet? Do you appreciate them?

Observing his reactions will allow us to know if we are on the right track or not when talking to him or telling him certain things.

It is not about keeping him in a glass case and pretending that nothing affects him, because he is human and feels emotions, but we can take care of our language and our communication so that it is healthy and never harmful to him.

Put into practice what you have learned

As you become aware of your language and how it influences your children, you can begin to put all these learnings into practice.

You will learn which phrases are better to use and which ones are not (also taking into account their sensitivity ), what tone of voice to use, when it is better to make some comments or others, etc.

Benefits of taking care of the language with our children

Remember that children who receive positive feedback on their behavior, who are praised and advised, and who are spoken to with respect and not reproach, are more likely to:

  • Develop positive self-esteem
  • trust in themselves
  • Develop favorable self -knowledge
  • Treat others equally (with respect and love)

Therefore, let us always resort to conscious and careful language! Our children will appreciate it, and this will help them become happy adults who also say things to their children, if they have them, with respect and love.

Keep in mind that to the extent that we educate, we are models, and vice versa; Through our behavior we educate.