Witnessing your child struggle can be painful, and oftentimes your parental instincts make you want to jump in and save the day. However, helping our children in this way can end up hurting them in the end. Allowing them to get through struggles on their own will help empower them and inspire resilience. Here’s how to empower your children when they are struggling:
Sometimes all your child needs is a listening ear. Be there to listen rather than trying to solve their problems for them. Provide choices like “Do you want to keep trying, take a break, or ask for help?” Ask them open-ended questions like “What have you tried to do to solve this? What else can you try?” You can brainstorm together, but let them take the lead. If they are truly stuck, try to lead them in the right direction with questions such as “What do you think would happen if you tried ____?”
Teach your child problem-solving skills when they are experiencing a struggle.
- What Am I Feeling? Help your child address how they are feeling about the situation. When they gain an understanding of their feelings, they will be able to take a step back and regain their focus.
- What’s the Problem? Have your child describe the problem, ensuring that they are taking responsibility for their role rather than placing blame on something/someone else.
- What are the Solutions? Brainstorm possible solutions for the problem that you can narrow down later.
- What Would Happen If…? Discuss the potential outcomes for each possible solution. Look at it from multiple points of view to ensure that each solution is fair, keeping others’ feelings in mind.
- Which One Will I Try? Have your child choose one solution that they think is best to try. If the chosen solution does not work, discuss why and choose another. Encourage them to keep trying until the problem is solved.
When your child is struggling, it is helpful to remind them of obstacles they have overcome in the past. Speak to things that were once difficult, but got easier with time and effort. Discuss their strengths, reminding them that they worked hard to earn those strengths. Let them know that everyone struggles and it is a normal occurrence.
It is important to know when it is time to lend a helping hand. When a skill needs to be learned in order for your child to succeed, teach them. If the task is not developmentally appropriate, provide guidance. There is no harm in helping when your child has tried multiple strategies but is still struggling.
Walton Academy is always striving to provide a consistent, nurturing and innovative environment for our students. We understand that early childhood education plays a large role in your child’s development, so we ensure they receive a high-quality education. With small classrooms and highly qualified teachers, you can be sure your child will receive individualized instruction, character education, and social-emotional habits.
Walton Academy firmly believes that an environment with minimal distractions is key to student success. To achieve an optimal learning environment and experience, we require each child to undergo our enrollment screening process. During our enrollment screening process, students are observed and assessed academically, behaviorally, and socially. Our enrollment screening ensures that our classroom environment remains focused and that each student can excel and reach their full potential. Contact us today to learn more!