"What Kids Need To Succeed"- Part II: Postive Family Communication
May 6, 2016
“WHAT KIDS NEED TO SUCCEED” - PART II : Positive Family Communication
Several years ago, a series of surveys were given to school-age children to determine why some young people succeed in life and others have a harder time. In total, almost 400,000 students took the survey across 33 states. The surveys revealed that healthy, productive students possessed more of what they termed, “developmental assets” or resources for positive growth. As you might expect, the more assets a young person has, the better.
The survey results showed that the resources kids need were not complicated to provide, but they do require time and commitment from caring adults. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, community leader, or simply an adult who wants to help kids, you can begin building assets today in the lives of our children. This impressive amount of data led the researchers to conclude – “It’s worth it because it works.”
The second resource listed for success was Positive Family Communication. A family where parents are approachable, having frequent conversations on a variety of topics, where kids turn to their parents for advice and support, has an enormous impact upon our children.
Here are several suggestions from the research for growing Positive Family Communication in your home:
- Be available wherever and whenever your kids want to talk. What is you’re in the middle of something? Arrange a time when you can talk – soon. Watch for hints, such as a child who hangs around usually wants to talk.
- When your kids talk, really listen. Accept the fact that you won’t agree on everything. Never label a child’s opinions as “silly, stupid, or childish.”
- Ask your kids every day about what they are doing and thinking. Tell them about your day, too. Form the habit of frequent conversation.
- Have family dinners now and then during which conversation focuses on one topic. Brainstorm as a family the things you might talk about, then rotate who turn it is to pick the topic.
- Spend time every week with each child individually. Your kids will cherish these special times.
- Ask your child’s opinion or advice about something important.
- Communicate with your child’s teachers so you know what is going on at school and can then talk your kids about these activities, events, or people. School is a big deal for them, it’s where they spend the vast majority of their time, so the more you know about it, the more relevant your conversations.
- Take them with you when you are running errands or doing something that is on your “to do” list. Even though it may not concern them, the personal time with you is invaluable and there is almost always something they will learn about life along the way.
Make sure to check your new school resource, RightNowMedia.org, for dozens of great videos on effective parenting and raising successful, Godly children.
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