How children learn

I was doing some research and tripped upon an article about a book that addresses the optimum way a young child should learn.  The book was published in 2010, so the theories and research is still very relevant.   I chose to share this little piece of the article with you.  I will be sharing more as time goes on.

In the book, Mind in the Making: Seven Essential Life Skills Every Child Needs, Ellen Galinsky offers some thoughts on one of the main ways we can change children’s views about themselves and their world.

“Rather than praising their personalities or intelligence (‘you are so smart’ or ‘uncoordinated’), or attributing their accomplishments to luck, we can praise their efforts or strategies.  I watched this process at work in theBingNursery SchoolatStanfordUniversity.  Children were given a very difficult puzzle to work on, and most agonized over it.  The teacher’s comments continued to reinforce their problem-solving strategies: ‘Look, you turned that piece around and around to see where it would fit’ or ‘You looked for a piece that was the same color as the piece you are holding.’  The children struggled, but they didn’t walk away; they didn’t give up.  They were taking on challenges!”

Isn’t that just want we want for our children:  To take on challenges, learn from them, conquer them, and then have a very positive self-esteem once they have succeeded?

Pam Deutsch