KELLY BROWN: I’m so proud of my little man but I don’t want to pressure him...

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YOU try very hard not to put pressure on your children to achieve.

But finding that balance between encouraging them to do well but

not piling on the pressure can be tricky stuff.

We all know our little ones are different and all have their strengths.

But it seems all parents are programmed to be a little bit competitive over their children.

Sorry, I mean proud of our children.

From the moment they are born, we enter into the circus of the child olympics, comparing everything our children do.

When they start sitting up, when they start talking, when they start to walk, when they can write their name.

These are all milestones we proudly talk about and hope, whether we admit it or not, our child is not the last over the finishing line.

This irrational sense of competition continues once our children start school. And this is the point when we have to find the balance between fostering a sense of competition without being too over-competitive.

And then there is letting your children know it is alright if they are not the best at everything.

It is a real tightrope to walk, especially once your child has grasped the concept of progression.

They want to get the next ‘teddy card’ or book colour for their reading or get the next level for their maths.

And throw in competitive sport... well you have all the right ingredients for a child who always likes to win.

But back to us parents.

I am getting my first taste of academia for my son who started school in September.

I was bursting with pride the first time he read an entire book to me.

Okay, so it not Dickens and was full of simple words, but it is such an achievement. So now I am treading that line of encouraging him and not quenching a real thirst for knowledge, without pushing him.

He loves maths and is always asking me to ask him sums. So I suppose I just need to work out the formula which makes him happy and want to learn.