The Importance to Reward Your Child to Create Success in Your Child’s Life
Written by Julie M. Armenta,
M.A. Education & Family Specialist
Educational & Family Specialist & Founder of Armenta Learning Academy Raising children is not an easy task. It truly takes a village to shape, impress and nurture a child into a productive and well-adjusted adult. Helping our children realize their mistakes and correct them is one of the most important jobs we have as parents, teachers and mentors. However, positive reinforcement is a must for good behavior and important for success in your child’s life. On an average day, a child receives 20 criticisms or corrections for every accolade or compliment they receive. Here are a few recommendations for how to administer rewards to your children in an effective and timely manner for a successful and promising outcome.
Positive reinforcement is the best behavioral strategy and tool from a parent, mentor or teacher. In order to create balanced or positive behavior, it is important to look for the good in your child. It’s as simple as a pat on the back, a quick smile or a high-five for making the bed or helping a sibling, these little positive gestures will resonate for your child.
Be specific about what success looks like, such as stating, “I like how you cleaned up your room today. Your bed is made, your trash is picked up and your clothes are put away.” It is effective and important to be specific on the behaviors that are being noticed and reinforced to keep your children on the right track of good behavior.
Be in the Moment:
Spend time daily with your children to connect and build communication and respect with them. I have noticed many children will act out to get the attention they need. Just a little bit of your time goes a long way. We all need quality time with the ones we love. It’s also good to model appropriate behavior to our children during that quality time.
Be in Control:
At a very young age, parents must make it clear to their children that they, as parents, are the ones in charge. It is a privilege for children to have their own room or a TV or many of the other luxuries provided to them in their in lives. It is alright to have your child’s input, but overall, it is up to the parent to make the final decisions with no room for discussion or argument. Children must understand that all they receive must be earned by showing positive behavior and a good attitude.
Reinforce their good behaviors with tokens or anything that tracks the good behavior and has meaning to them, such as a star chart or coins in the jar. This is especially effective for younger children. Younger children need the reward to be more immediate to stay focused and disciplined. For older children, reward them with something that has value and meaning to them, such as video game time, TV time, sleepovers with friends or trips to the movies. Daily, weekly and monthly rewards all need to be implemented for all ages.
It is not only important to reward your children, but taking away rewards for poor behavior is a very effective tool. If they do not do their homework, they will lose their TV, phone, computer or friend time. Children over eight should receive time outs of 30 minutes and adolescents for over an hour for poor behaviors. If the behavior is severe enough, privileges should be removed for the remainder of the day or week. Be consistent and always stay focused. Children will try to push, but don’t give in to behaviors you don’t want them to exhibit. We don’t want our children to persist with negative behaviors and get worse. I highly recommend a schedule be put together for your children. For example, setting specific guidelines. School ends and the children get home around 3:00pm. At 3:30pm, homework will be done and if no homework is assigned, read or pre-study for a test is required. Always have them stick to a study schedule to help them build this habit into their college years and adulthood. At 5:30pm, dinner and family time will commence. Then, after 6:00pm, children can play games, use the phone or watch TV.
It is important to reward the children after they have done their required work to earn their privileges. It is important to create balance for children in the family to compliment and reinforce good behavior. Make it fun and creative! Enjoy your children and you will see great results with all the hard work you put in for consistency, continuity and communication. We have a responsibility to our children to give them the tools they need to be effective adults and dynamic members of society. The habits, disciplines and behaviors their parents, teachers and mentors instill in them will help your children achieve their goals in life.
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Julie M. Armenta, MA Founder & Education & Family
Cape Dr., #270
Laguna Niguel, CA 92677
Mrs. Armenta looks forward to working with your child on their academic journey, and having a successful school year. We offer school, tutoring and all educational services, including accelerated studies, classes for credit, and remedial support. We provide Academic & Enrichment Programs year-round for all learning needs including Special Needs and Gifted programs, Pre-K thru Adult, Onsite/Offsite, 7 days a week, part-time or full-time with flexible scheduling. Call for support in all subjects in your home or at the academy. We guarantee success!