The Malls Are Full But A Child's Most Important Need Can't Be Found There
Some children look forward to going back to school. They get to see old friends. They get to learn now things. However for the struggling student it signals anxiety. The anxiety of feeling different. Of feeling stupid. It's no picnic.
But it doesn't have to be that way.
The long term answer is to build up Confidence and Learning ability. Once that happens school anxiety will be a thing of the past. That anxiety will turn into joy. The joy of learning. Like it did for this girl.
A Happy Healthy Prepared Mind
The most important thing for children to bring to school is a healthy happy prepared mind that is ready to learn. Without that everything else is just sort of useless.
- Anxiety gets in the way of learning.
- The teachers first impression is not good and that set's the tone
- Everything then just spirals downward
When this happens year after year children just get further and further behind.
Attitude Affects Everything
Those who approach school with a smile quickly surpass those who come in with a frown. Here are some tips to help
1) Physiology - It is becoming more and more clear that the fastest way to control our emotions is through our physiology. Posture and breathing have a profound effect on attitude. Teach your child how to feel better just by pulling their shoulders back, standing up straight, and breathing deep into their belly. It sounds to easy but it works.
2) Power Pose - This is more physiology but it takes it one step further. You can learn about power pose here.
3) Reinforce with Mirror Neurons - If you get anxious over your child's anxiety you will amplify their anxiety. So make sure that you practice 1 and 2 above and use them yourself. If you can keep yourself strong emotionally then this strength will lift your child up instead of causing more worry. In other words, be strong for your child and their mirror neurons will pick that up and reciprocate. It's not magic, it's neuroscience. (But sometimes it seems like magic)
These are useful tools and will get you through the tough days until you get your child on a complete program for helping them develop the needed skills
A Mind Prepared to Grow
It's very easy to produce (or eliminate) anxiety in children just by a few simple changes in the way we say things.
What we want to achieve is a growth mindset. I know that you are a great parent who works hard at developing a great mindset in your child ( <---- Pay attention to what I did there ). And you can do that by the way you structure praise.
When in a learning context, praise is best structured to praise the effort, not the outcome. This is not true for a testing context such as a school test or a sports game. In those context success or failure can be framed to congratulate effort in the case of a win. Or signal the need for more effort in the case of a loss.
Just know which context you are in and express praise accordingly.
This video explains praising effort quite well, the author obviously worked hard at it :-)
Bad Attitudes Come Easy
We tend to think happiness is the default. It's not. Developing a good attitude in your child takes a little work. But with the right tools it's not that hard.
Although tantrums and attitude do signal that something is wrong, they do not have to persist. You can work on ways to help your child through the tough times while at the same time building their learning skills and love for learning so the bad attitude doesn't last forever.
Emotions can actually be very addictive. They are, in a sense, chemicals flowing through our body. If the wrong chemicals flow through our body for too long we actually become addicted to them. Becoming addicted to anxiety and fear has long lasting effects. Elementary and middle school ages being so developmental these bad emotions can stick. Forming a life long personality.
It's much better to deal with them and correct them now rather than put up with them for a lifetime.
Great job reading this far. I'm proud of your hard work to be a great parent. It will pay off in dividends as your child lives a much happier healthier, more successful life. And you'll enjoy watching that.
Learning struggles don't have to be forever. There's actually an easy way to get past them.
You can help your child eliminate the problem now and watch your child change into a better version of themselves. One that will last a lifetime.
Do You Need help with a Learning Difficulty?
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Understanding how to help someone with a learning difficulty starts with understanding which micro-skills are affected. When you learn which of the micro-skills is the problem, you will then be on your way to solving it.
You'll also learn how to:
- Build confidence
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