If you are parenting a differently wired child, you probably don’t need me to say this, but for the sake of being on the same page, let me be clear – gifted children often struggle with confidence and self-esteem to a greater degree than their neurotypical counterparts.
Because this is such a prevalent concern for those of us navigating how to best parent and homeschool gifted/2E children, I want to share practical ideas to help you as you help your child develop confidence.
How Do I Help My Child Who Lacks Confidence?
An easy way to think about helping our children develop this important social and emotional skill, for me, is to break it down into what I call “The 3 C’s.”
The 3 C’s are:
Let’s break these down a bit and talk about how these three little words can make all the difference in helping our children.
It All Begins With Connection
Research has shown that one of the most important indicators of learner success is the relationship they have with their teacher (how much more effective is this when we are teaching our own children!).
Add in the relationships our kiddos develop with each other and other mentors in their lives, and it make sense that part of how they develop confidence is through a sense of belonging and connection with others.
Our relationships with our children matter far more than any one academic task or subject. They form the foundation of how our children see themselves and how confident they are in their own abilities.
Over time, our children need to chance to feel their own sense of success and even failure.
With super bright kids, it is not uncommon for them to actually feel more uncomfortable and anxious around success than failure, due to their tendency towards perfectionism. I share more about the research behind this in the episode, but the summary is, it’s not enough to just tell our kids they did a good job. They have to work through their own complexities in a safe, intentional way in order to develop confidence.
One of the best ways to do this is through focusing on their strengths and allowing them to try and fail in areas that are most comfortable and interesting for them first . (You can learn more about Strength Based Learning HERE.)
Our Children’s Choices
Another area that helps our children develop confidence is through giving them the opportunity to choose for themselves.
I believe this to be essential in our homeschools (you already know how strongly I feel about child-directed, interest-based learning). I think it is also true in everyday life circumstances.
The more our children are free to make choices and experiences the consequences of those choices (good or bad), over time, the more confident and independent they become.
The Relationship Between Confidence And Learning In Our Homeschools
Join me and Shawna for a more in-depth discussion about helping our children develop confidence, and how to best approach this social emotional need in our families and our homeschools.
Links and Resources from Today’s Show:
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