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How To Give Constructive Criticism To Educate Your Kids

How To Give Constructive Criticism To Educate Your Kids

Parenting 5.0 – how to conduct constructive criticism to educate your children. This, in my personal opinion, is extremely crucial in building and shaping your children’s future. It is important because your criticism and your behaviour will greatly influence the life of your children.

Children hardly forget things, words and people. Often, many children, between the age four to six, tend to be sensitive towards everything happening around them. For example, my son, who is four years old, is quite sensitive. If we scold him, he reacts in a negative manner. We have to be very cautious in dealing with him in order to correct his mistakes, and we correct him through constructive criticism.

What is constructive criticism?

Constructive criticism is criticism without judgement that is expressed in a friendly manner, and is valued to be reasonable, logical and effective. These opinions are based on an individual’s work and have the blending of both positive and negative observations. The main purpose of constructive criticism is to improve the result of the individual’s work. For example, when you cook a meal for the first time, you ask your partner for their opinions. Instead of simply hearing, “This tastes so heavenly”, you would rather prefer constructive criticism like “Just add a little bit of salt and bake it for another 10 minutes, I think it’ll taste better”. As much as this is applicable to you, it is equally important to apply this to educate your children.

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How to provide constructive criticism to your children?

When we see our kids doing something wrong or dangerous, we often scold them straight away. But please remember that raising voices, calling them names, or even threatening them are not the ideal ways to bring up your kids. Blaming your children may instantly vent your anger and frustration, but this will hamper your relationship with them in the long-term. For example, if your kids refuse to listen to you and do something opposing, instead of yelling at them and calling them ‘stupid’, you can simply say, “I don’t like what you are doing because it may hurt you. Kindly stop doing it because I love you.”

Does this kind of constructive criticism help? Yes, it does. It highlights what is right and what is wrong in a positive manner, and it should be like the hamburger below formed by compliment and criticism.

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    Here are 6 ways in which you can educate your kid with constructive criticism:

    1. Point out the problem by using descriptive statement instead of language with judgement

    As I have previously mentioned, there is no point in scolding your kids for their mistakes. It will only worsen the situation. Using language with judgement, such as ‘how stupid you are’, or ‘you are behaving like a maniac’ won’t help either. The best solution is to recognize your kids’ previous effort and achievement first and then explain to them about their problems in an objective manner. For instance, if you are disappointed with your boy’s test result in Mathematics, instead of scolding him, tell him “I understand you are good at other subjects, but not Maths. Don’t worry, just practice harder. I think you will achieve a better result next time. If you have any problems in your learning, I can talk to your teacher or I’ll help you with it. I hope to see you having some improvement in the next test.”

    2. Figure out the root of the problem before criticising

    It is important to figure out the root of the problem and it is your duty to do so. It would be easier for you to explain to your child what has gone wrong. Think twice or as many times as you need before you express your dissatisfaction or anger. Your constructive criticism is always more useful than emotional outburst. Let’s continue with your boy’s Maths problem. Maybe he has some problems in the class. Maybe he’s nervous during the test. Just dig deep to find out the root cause and come up with corresponding solutions. Good problem-solving skills are what all parents have to master.

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    3. Control your anger

    Don’t let your anger take the upper hand. You are dealing with a child, not an adult. Remember, children have feelings too. No one likes hearing criticism in an a hostile manner. Next time before you lose your temper, try not to talk to your child. Take time, calm down, even if it takes hours. Only approach your kids when you become even-tempered. You must have a controlled, loving tone when talking to your children.

    4. Tell your children about the consequences of their mistakes

    Another important point is to only criticise about the wrongdoing, but not your child. When you are delivering your criticism, make sure your kids understand that what distresses you is their behaviour but not themselves. For example, if your children get hooked to television or tablet, tell them that you are worried because watching too much may lead to troubled eyesights. Explain to them that you wouldn’t like them to be wearing glasses. Guide them to get involved in different activities that will keep their mind activated.

    5. Be clear about your criticism

    Before you start criticizing your beloved small ones, make sure you know what to deliver. If you hesitate, your children may misinterpret the message. Your aim is to educate your child, not to embarrass or punish them. Think before you deliver.

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    6. Give your children an opportunity to correct themselves

    Be it failing in school or misbehaving, the ultimate goal of constructive criticism is to prompt your children to realize their mistakes and make corresponding corrections. In this way, your kids will learn to take responsibilities of their own actions in the future.

    Raising kids is not an easy task. Through constructive criticism, you can shape a better and more successful future of your children.

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    Published on November 7, 2018

    How to Homeschool in the 21st Century (For All Types of Parents & Kids)

    How to Homeschool in the 21st Century (For All Types of Parents & Kids)

    In 2016, it was estimated that 1.7 million children were being homeschooled in the U.S, roughly 3.3% of all school-aged children.[1] Although this may not sound like a big portion of the population, the growth rate of homeschooling has been 7 to15% per year for the last two decades.

    The burgeoning numbers are not a coincidence. There are tremendous benefits to homeschooling, including one-on-one teaching, adaptability to individual needs and learning styles, a safe learning environment, encouraging learning for knowledge rather than grades, and tailoring a curriculum to the child’s interests.

    Is homeschooling something that you have been considering for your family? With all of the tools and resources available for homeschoolers in the 21st century, it may be easier than you think.

    How to Homeschool (Getting Started)

    After thinking it through, you’ve decided that homeschooling is the right step for you and your family. Now what? Here are the first things you should do to get your homeschooling journey started on the right track.

    Figure Out the Laws

    Homeschooling is regulated by the state, not the federal government. The first step is to find the current and accurate legal requirements mandated by your state in order to educate your child legally.[2]

    The regulations can vary widely, from strict guidelines to no guidelines at all. However, don’t be overwhelmed by the legal jargon. There are many resources and local communities for homeschooling families that can help you figure out the logistics.

    Decide on an Approach

    Every child’s needs are different. This is your chance to choose the homeschooling style or combination of styles that best fits your child’s learning style and interests. A brief description of seven different homeschooling methods are listed below.

    Supplies/Resources

    Often times, purchasing a homeschooling curriculum is done too early in the planning process, resulting in buyer’s remorse.

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    A curriculum is not always needed for homeschooling, and other types of free or less structured resources are readily available.

    Find a Community

    Getting connected with a community of homeschoolers is one of the most important parts of building a successful and thriving homeschool environment for your kids.

    Look for communities online for virtual support or a local group that you and your kids can interact with. Partnering with others fosters better socialization skills for the students and provides opportunities for field trips, classes, and outings that wouldn’t have otherwise been a part of the homeschooling experience.

    7 Different Homeschooling Methods

    1. School-At-Home

    Also known as Traditional homeschool, School-At-Home uses essentially the same curriculum as the local private or public school but at home.

    The lessons can be completed independently, but more commonly, they are administered by a parent or a teacher-facilitated online school.

    • Benefits: formal standards, wide selection of curricula, same pace as peers, short-term friendly
    • Drawbacks: expensive, inflexible, time consuming, parent can get easily burnt out
    • Resources: K12, Time4Learning, Abeka

    2. Classical

    One of the most popular homeschooling methods used, it borrows educational practices from Ancient Greece and Rome. Subject areas are studied chronologically so that students can understand the consequence of ideas over time.

    Socratic dialogue fosters effective discussions and debate to achieve beyond mere comprehension. There is often a strong emphasis on Great Books[3] as well as Greek and Latin.

    3. Unit Studies

    Rather than breaking up education into subjects, unit studies approach each topic as a whole, studying it from the perspective of each subject area.

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    For example, a unit study about animals could include reading books about animals, learning about the classification of animals, figuring out which animals live on which continents, etc. This method is often used as a technique in other more comprehensive educational methodologies.

    • Benefits: promotes thinking about concepts as a whole, not monotonous or redundant, student-directed, bolsters weaker subject areas, beneficial for teaching multi-age students
    • Drawbacks: incomplete, knowledge gaps, curriculum-dependent
    • Resources: Unit Study, Unit Studies, Unit Studies Made Easy, Konos

    4. Charlotte Mason

    This Christian homeschooling style utilizes shorts periods of study (15-20 minute max for elementary, 45 minute max for high school), along with nature walks and history portfolios.

    Students are encouraged to practice observation, memorization, and narration often. With a focus on “living books” (stories with heroes, life lessons, socio-ethical implications), reading plays a big role in this student-paced teaching style.

    5. Montessori

    Maria Montessori developed this method through working with special needs children in the early 20th century.

    With a primary focus on the student setting the pace and indirect instruction from the teacher, this approach includes free movement, large unstructured time blocks (up to 3 hours), multi-grade classes, and individualized learning plans based on interests.

    6. Unschooling

    Unschooling is a learning model largely based on the work of John Holt.[4] The teaching style focuses mainly on the students’ interests, putting priority on experiential, activity-based, and learn as you go approaches.

    For basic skills such as reading, writing, and math, a systematic technique is employed, but testing and evaluations are typically not utilized. Teachers, in general, play more of a facilitator role.

    7. Eclectic/Relaxed

    As the most popular method of homeschool, eclectic homeschooling is child-directed, resourceful, and non-curriculum based.

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    Parents can sample any combination of homeschooling methods and styles or resources. One growing sector of eclectic homeschooling combines part homeschooling with part traditional schooling.

    How to Facilitate Homeschooling with Technology

    One of the reasons homeschooling is more feasible than ever before is due to the accessibility of tools and resources to enhance the learning process.

    Email

    Email is a tool that has really stood the test of time. Invented in 1972, it is still used today as a primary means of communicating on the Internet.

    It is a great way to share assignments, links, and videos between parent and student.

    Google Drive/Calendar

    Google Drive offers a multitude of essential programs that can come in handy for homeschoolers, such as Docs, Sheets, Slides, and more.

    With its sharing capabilities, easy accessibility, and auto-save ability, it’s easier than ever to organize and complete assignments. It will improve students’ writing and typing skills, as well as eliminate the need for paper.

    Google Calendar is an excellent tool for tracking assignment due dates, planning field trips and activities, and developing time management skills.

    Ebooks

    Rather than invest in physical copies of books, ebooks are a wonderful option for saving money and space. There are plenty of places that offer a free or paid subscription to a wide selection of ebooks:

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    E-Courses

    When a structured curriculum is necessary for teaching a certain topic, an e-course is the way to go.

    From watercolors to calculus, there are e-courses available about almost everything. Including different teaching styles that vary from the parents will encourage students to learn in different ways.

    The visual and auditory stimulation will also be beneficial in helping students understand and retain the concepts being taught.

    Some recommendations:

    Youtube

    Youtube is not just a platform for music videos and cats doing funny things. There are a number of Youtube channels that produce quality educational videos, free of charge.

    Creating a playlist of videos for various topics is a great way to supplement a homeschool education.

    Some recommendations:

    Final Thoughts

    Homeschooling in the current age looks much different than it did ten years ago. There are more options and more flexibility when it comes to educating kids at home.

    Don’t be overwhelmed by the idea of homeschooling your children if it could make a positive impact on your family.

    Featured photo credit: Hal Gatewood via unsplash.com

    Reference

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