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Catching kids doing good things

Updated on July 13, 2011

Catching a child doing kind things

The phrase “catching a child doing kind things” How often do we catch a child doing well? More often than not we catch children doing naughty things and point it out to them. What if by catching a child doing good things it would start to cut down on some of the bad behavior that children get the negative attention for.

What exactly is the concept of catching a child doing good things?

The concept is making it a point daily to acknowledge when our children do an act of kindness, do what they are told to do on the first try, help a little bug to crawl out of the house, brush their teeth, smile and laugh instead of cry, play nice with their sibling, this list can go on and on but mainly the best way to catch a child doing good is with the thing that you usually catch them being bad for.


Catching a child doing good deeds

The psychology behind is quite simple; they are getting positive reinforcement when they are doing well, even for the small things, so that positive energy that they are getting feels good and they are going to want more of it.  The way that they get more of it is by doing more good things, listening better, playing with friends or sibling better, whatever it may be that they need work on. Let’s say that your child stalls at bedtime or bruising their teeth. For example one night they brush their teeth without you having to ask them to do it, this would be a good time to say “great job” or let them know that you noticed that they brushed their teeth without you asking them to do it. That is the time when catching them being good is going to have the biggest impact on the behavior, because those are the things that they usually get caught at for being bad.

Children by nature want to please, and get positive attention from adults in their lives, especially their parents but also teachers, care givers, grandparents. When children see that they are getting great positive feedback for doing well or notice that they did what you wanted them to without asking them to do it, then they will certainly want to do more of that. The concept is so simple but not used as often as it should be used.

The wonderful thing about catching a child doing kind things is that we can also catch our spouse doing well, or our own parents, friends and so forth. The next time that you see your child doing something good, make it a point to let them know that you are watching and give them an extra hug, great big smile, a wink of your eye, or a simply I am proud of you for what you just did. However you choose to acknowledge it just remember to acknowledge it.


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