Cultivating Confidence at Home

This post is in sponsorship with Sylvan Learning.

Confidence: “A feeling of self-assurance arising from one’s appreciation of one’s own abilities or qualities.” (New Oxford American Dictionary).

Wow! Do you feel how impactful this definition is when you really consider it? Just the other day, I was dealing with a lack of self-assurance from my own abilities, even now as an adult. I certainly don’t want a lack of confidence to play a major role in my boys’ lives as they grow. I want to help my boys feel self-assured in whatever ways I can! This leads to a larger question, how can we cultivate confidence in our homes? 

As parents, both Michael and I work hard to ensure that our kids are given small, accomplishable tasks around our house, in their school work, extracurricular activities, practice, and skill development. We have found this enables them to feel accomplished, proud and to have the ability to take on the next step or the next biggest task at hand. The goal is to instill a confidence that will help them in accomplishing big goals in the future. I’m also going to share how I always work to praise the good they’ve done before I challenge them on what they could do better next time. 

Small Tasks Accomplish Big Goals

Building Confidence at Home

Around the house, we base the boys’ tasks on their age and what we’ve noticed they are able to succeed at. 

For chores, our younger boys are able to load the dishwasher alongside the older boys and me, use the stick vacuum to sweep, load the washing machine, pick up their toys, and put their clothes away.

For the older boys, they are able to accomplish all of these chores and some extra ones, like mowing, shoveling snow, cleaning bathrooms, etc. Since we have had this system in place, our older boys are now able to direct and delegate tasks impressively!

The same goes with being responsible for themselves. When they’re little, Michael and I bear the primary burden for their personal hygiene. As they grow, they are given more and more responsibilities in this area, and I love seeing how they value their health and pride themselves on taking care of that now. 

In working with Sylvan Learning, I have seen how they also work to increase the confidence of their students by working one on one with students to accomplish small tasks. Then they show students how they worked toward a bigger goal. (More about this in the next section below.)

Once we have given them little jobs that they have succeeded at, we give them more challenging ones, and I’ve loved to witness their confidence soar. 

In working with Sylvan Learning, I have seen how they also work to increase the confidence of their students by working one on one with students to accomplish small tasks. Then they show students how they worked toward a bigger goal. (More about this in the next section below.)

Building Confidence in Schoolwork

As a mama of a few boys with dyslexia, working to build up confidence in this particular area has proven to be challenging. With reading and spelling being the hardest subjects to navigate and affecting all subjects, I am so grateful to find experts who can come alongside me, as a parent. Sylvan Learning is an incredible resource for parents and guides me in enabling my boys to not only feel confident, but KNOW they’re succeeding! 

For reading, I’ve worked to give my boys simple books they can finish completely on their own, while also challenging them to finish a few pages of a harder book! This way, they’re accomplishing both an entire book and challenging themselves at a smaller, more difficult task. For spelling, we work on their current lists, but also often refer back to older lists they know. This way they can gain confidence in spelling by both practicing what they already know AND challenging themselves with current goals. 

As a parent, if you’re struggling right now with even knowing where to start when it comes to schoolwork and how to instill this confidence in a child, I really do encourage you to reach out to Sylvan Learning. You can talk to someone there, see what kind of tutoring would work best for your child, and what would best help their academic confidence! I’m so impressed by all they have to offer parents and how they work alongside you to figure out the best solution for each individual child. 

And, from now until May 9thSylvan is offering their insightassessment for just $29 (regularly $199)! Their assessment uses a combination of computer adaptive skill assessments, observations and attitude surveys to really get to know your child. So, if you’re not sure where your child is struggling or excelling, the insight assessment can pinpoint EXACTLY what your child needs help with!

Building Confidence in Extracurricular Activities

Our boys love trying out all different types of activities to find what they love most and do best, and we encourage that. 

One of the ways we teach them the value of working hard in this area, and therefore, gaining confidence, is through practice and showing up. Commitment can be a lost character trait in today’s world, but both practice and showing up develop this trait and allow confidence to grow. 

Commitment is also something that Sylvan Learning works to instill in a child by teaching them how to practice and how much it helps to show up, learn, and grow. A child that learns this skill will not only grow into a confident adult, but an adult that is appreciated and respected by those around him or her. 

Praise first, challenge second 

This is often well spoken about, but not often well done. The easiest way for a child to develop low self-esteem and lack confidence is by being criticized and challenged oneverything they do. 

I have to CHOOSE to make praise the first thing out of my mouth when instructing and guiding any child, followed by a challenge of how it could be done better in the future. I prefer the word challenge over criticism as it gives them hope and a goal, rather than simply reflecting and focusing on failures. When we highlight success, it allows little ones to see the good that they have done. This helps to diminish the severity of the challenge and provide room for improvement and not shame.

Do you struggle with helping your children to feel confident? I would love to hear from you and how you work to build self-assurance in your little ones, and some tips and tricks you might use! As parents, we are always learning as well. It is so important to use resources around you I’m so honored to be in a partnership with Sylvan Learning and to walk alongside a company also committed to the same goals I am as a parent. They value children, desire to instill confidence in them, work hard to praise them and then challenge, and want to see ALL children succeed! 

Thank you for reading and I hope these hints were helpful to you!

Your friend,