Here are 3 Tips to help build your Child’s Confidence at home. These 3 Tips are what our Instructors use in class to help build confidence in our students. I have also used them at home with my Son Aiden. 

  1. Pre-Frame- At the beginning of class we explain to the students what we are going to do in class on that day. It may go something like this. Hey everyone today we are going to do a quick warm up, work on kata and then do Self-Defense if there is time we will play a game at the end of class. At home it may go something like this, Aiden today we need to have breakfast, then brush your teeth and get ready for school. After school mom will pick you up at the bus stop and bring you home. Then you can have a snack and do your homework after that we can go outside and play, or play video games. I have found over the years that when teaching, Students feel more confident when they know what is going to happen. When they know what is going to happen they are ready for it, and every step they successfully complete helps them gain even more confidence. Pre-framing is a great way to help your child feel more confident.
  2. Be A Good Finder- We teach our instructors to try to point out the good things kids are doing in class. We call it being a good finder. Sometimes it’s hard to do but if we are always correcting what our students are doing wrong and not giving them positive feedback they will not feel confident and not want to come. We do make corrections but we always try to point out what they are doing good first.  Then if we make a correction we have to make sure we catch them doing it correct and praise them for it. The worse thing we can do is ask them to do something and then not see them doing it correct. And then go correct them again for doing it wrong. I find it’s the same thing at home with my son. If I praise him for the good things he is doing and then make a correction he is more open to it. If we are always yelling at him for what he does wrong and not point out what he does good I will kill his confidence. So Let’s say he is cleaning his room after he is done I go in and I notice he put his shirts in the wrong place and I correct him for that but I did not praise him for putting his toys in the right spot, and making his bed. I will hurt his confidence. And he may think that he is not good at cleaning his room. Then the next time I ask him to do it he won’t want to.  So instead of correcting what he did wrong right away. I might say Aiden I am proud of you. You made your bed and you put your toys away great job. Next time can you just make sure you put your tee shirts in your second draw? He will say ok dad. And feel good about being praised for the great job he did. Believe me this is hard to do especially after working all day and dealing with all the things we need to do as parents. But if we are always correcting what they are doing wrong or yelling at them for bad behavior. We will definitely kill their confidence. Being a good finder parent will definitely help build your child’s confidence.
  3. The 3 D’s (Demonstrate, Detail, Drill) – In Class if we are going to teach our students a new technique or Kata. We teach our instructors to First Demonstrate the move. Then give verbal instructions, and then Drill the move over and over again. And this is not always easy to remember when you’re teaching 5 classes a day. But imagine a brand new student standing there and the instructor says Front kick, and starts counting and the new student was never taught how to do it. This will kill the new student’s confidence. So we want our instructors to treat everyone like they are new and always demonstrate first what they are teaching. Then Detail with verbal instructions as they are doing it with the class. And once the students have it they can Drill it over and over again. This can work the same way at home with our children. Sometimes we think our children know how to do what we are asking them to do. This may not be true. So instead of yelling at my son when he don’t clean his room the right way. I can help him clean it buy putting his cloths in the draws, and putting the toys in the toy bin, and showing him where to put his dirty cloths. This would be the demonstrating and detail part of the 3 D’s. Then once he learns how I want his room to be. Drilling it would be cleaning it every time it gets messy or better yet cleaning up after himself before it gets to that point. Doing things with our children to build their confidence will help them feel more confident when we expect them to do it by themselves.

I hope that these 3 tips can help at home with building your child’s confidence. We want to create as many successes as we can for our children. This gives them a great reference to look back on as they get older. They will remember as they get older being praised for the things they do right and they will remember the example we set for them as parents. Children do not learn from what we tell them, but they are watching us and will learn from our example.

I know I’m still working on using these tips when I teach Karate and when I am at home with my kids.

Shihan Mike Iannone

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