The best way to praise your children
Take a look at these two sentences.
1) “Great job, you must be really smart.”
2) “Great job, you must have worked really hard at this.”
So similar but a vast difference in results.
If you say “Great job, you must be really smart,”
the child hears,
“Oh you think I’m brilliant and talented. That’s why you admire me and why you value me. I better not do any that will disprove this evaluation.”
It leads to a “fixed mindset.”
Whereas focusing on the process of growth leads to greater perseverance, grit and focus. This comes from the research in the 1970’s by Stanford professor, Dr. Carol Dweck and has influenced so many others including Dr. Angela Lee Duckworth’s work on Grit.
When Alejandro was still small, I used to habitually say, “Good job.” And I noticed over time, a fixed mindset was starting to set in. If the task did not come quickly and easily, he wouldn’t persist or even attempt to try.
After I learned about Growth Mindset, I quickly shifted how I praised and it began to change. Thankfully, it seems to have been corrected.
It’s the same in music lessons. I have become aware of seeking to praise the process and effort. Over time, you will begin to notice how your child reacts differently.
I tried to read Carol Dweck’s academic works, but found them very dry. This video is a much simpler, easier and fun way to learn more.
Author: Andrew Ingkavet
Andrew Ingkavet is owner/teacher of Park Slope Music Lessons. He is the creator of the Musicolor Method™, a proven system to teach children music. He offers a music teacher training course and coaching and was a writer/producer and VJ for MTV in the 1990’s.