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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Is encouragement or praise better for your kids?

By Julie Nelson




Which is better, encouragement or praise, to build a child's self worth? Both are valuable and make distinctive contributions. An analysis of external (praise) and internal (encouragement) feedback


JewishWorldReview.com | Which is better, encouragement or praise, when helping children build self-worth? That's like asking who is a better parent: mom or dad? (Don't answer that!). Both are valuable and make distinctive contributions.

At its core, encouragement builds intrinsic worth and the opportunity to use positive self-talk. It turns an incident into a teaching opportunity where the child can evaluate his or her own effort. It offers more open-ended conversation between the child and parent. Educator Kittie Butcher from Michigan State University further asserts, "Encouragement also contains more information for the child than the easy, but empty phrases like, "That's great!"

Praise, on the other hand, is externally driven, with the parent doing the evaluating and talking. It is more frequently a closed-ended conversation, with the "good job" punctuating the interaction and not much following. However, it is a feel-good moment between the parent and child.

I'll share a recent example that contrasts praise and encouragement. My son recently sang a solo for the first time and looked a little troubled afterward. I might have wanted to reassure him and build his confidence by praising him, "Daniel, that was super singing. Good job."

Encouragement requires that I go deeper. It involves validation and empathetic listening. Instead, our conversation went something like this:

"Daniel, what did you think about your song?"

" I don't know."

"Did you feel good or bad about it?"

"I don't think it was very good."

"Why not?"

"I don't like singing in front of people."

"Oh. That makes you uncomfortable?"

"Yes. I'd rather just sing with the choir."

"I see. That's something good to know for the future. But how do you feel you sang the song? Did you get the words and notes right? Do you think the audience appreciated it?"

"Ya, I got it right and they liked it. Lots of people told me so."

"Oh, you had lots of people come up afterward and tell you they thought you sang well?"

"Yes."

"So aside from feeling uncomfortable, how do you feel you sang?"

"I guess pretty well."

"You have a good voice?"

"Ya, I do."

In this second example, I was able to help my son do a lot more mature reflection on his own. I became his guide toward self-discovery as he processed and verbalized his own feelings. I took the time to help him develop esteem rather than telling him what to think and feel.

So is praise bad? No. I use it quite often! It is especially useful with babies, toddlers and preschoolers as we shape understanding of themselves and set behavioral boundaries. If the task doesn't require a child to evaluate her effort, a quick, "Thank you so much. Well done," does the job. It takes little effort, but gives a child plenty of verbal "high fives" throughout the day.

With that being said, praise can become a parent's default button because it is so easy to use. "Super job." "I'm so proud of you." "Way to go." Too much praise and too little encouragement can feed a parent's ego instead of a child feeding her own. It can create a "praise junkie" in an older child.

Dr. Carol Dweck, Ph.D., a professor at Columbia University, conducted a study on the effects of praise. She found children who defined their abilities by the approval of their parents felt less worthy when others didn't judge them as "best" or didn't slather on the praise.

Children who only hear what their parents think of them and don't create their own mental and emotional narratives will more often look to their parents for approval. The dangers of having a child seek approval from outside sources, including peers, are alarming.

Here are four pro-encouragement points to consider:


STIMULATION AND INSPIRATION

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1. Be child focused rather than parent focused.

Kids are usually hungry for approval. Don't exploit their dependence on us and an emotional reward. We are stealing an opportunity for the child to take delight in her own efforts. Rather than "How did I do, dad?" "Do you like my picture?" It is better to hear, "Hey, dad. I did this!"

Parent-focused praise=value judgment

i.e. "You got such good grades. I'm so proud of you!"

Child-focused encouragement=internal motivation

i.e. "Look at your grades! Which one are you most proud of? How hard did you study in math? Is there any place you could do better?"

Yes, you can add, "And I'm so happy for you! You did so well. I know how hard you studied for that test!" High fives all around.

2. Be process oriented rather than outcome oriented.

While a child is working on a project or developing a skill, it takes a caring, conscientious parent to build the child's self-awareness along the way.

Only one person can win the race. There is only one class president. There is only one blue ribbon. Does that mean all the rest are losers? Not if both parent and child take time to notice the learning process rather than just the product, or outcome.

"What did you do well at soccer practice today? Where do you think is the greatest area of improvement?" Great coaches use both praise (immediate, short-term reward) and encouragement (lasting inspiration). So should parents.

3. Recognize character rather than rewards.

We would never want our child to win first place if that meant they cheated. They don't learn much about effort if they get an "A" on a paper they procrastinated to write until the night before it was due. It seems more expedient to recognize a child as they are putting in the effort to show that we value honest work over results.

"Look at the effort you put into making that airplane model. You sure are a determined young man. You never gave up even when it broke apart."

"I've noticed all the friends you have made on the track team. Your running times have improved, but you are also so friendly and positive. You always stayed after and cheered everyone up after a hard run."

Encouragement and praise are both good. Praise is easy to do and most parents (hopefully) praise children instinctively and liberally. Encouragement takes more time and effort. It adds another dimension to motivate children and gives them life's real lessons as material for building self-esteem. It takes a conscientious parent. You can do it. Way to go!

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Julie K. Nelson is the author of "Parenting With Spiritual Power." She writes articles on the joys, challenges and power of parenting.









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