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How to get your kids to do hard things.

September 9, 2019

How  do you work with your kids to get through a challenge?  Maybe they're struggling with mastering times tables, spelling, or learning how to ride a two wheeler.  As parents, whether you homeschool or not, we are constantly in the ring with our children when they face challenges.  

 

I know in our household we talk a lot about the growth mindset which is the idea that you aren't born with a limited skill set but with time and effort you can achieve just about anything.  Here's a great link to some quick videos you can show your kids to better understand growth mindset. https://ideas.classdojo.com/b/growth-mindset

Despite what we may tell them or which videos we show them, it still can be awfully frustrating if they keep spending time at a task and don't seem to see much progress.

 

That is why I am asking you to have your children see you fail.  When you fail, talk with them about how you've failed.  Then when you continue to do whatever task it is that you want to achieve, include them in on your progress.  

 

Just last year at the age of 36 I decided to try surfing. My husband and my boys packed up to head to the beach so that I could take my first surf lesson.  After a 15 minute tutorial from the experienced instructor, they threw us in  the ocean and I got thrashed around by the waves.  After a couple hours I was sore, exhausted, and did not stand up on the board once.

 

 I was elated to report back to my children that I had failed miserably.  They were super sweet and told me that it was ok.  We went back to the beach several times after I got my own surfboard and for the first 10 times I tried surfing I was not even able to stand up on the board.  My kids were there with me every single time.  I talked with them about it, and told them I was determined to learn how to surf.  

 

Now when they are struggling with something new, I always go back to my surf learning experience. They are able to wrap their mind around how most things won't come easily. But if we spend time and effort, we will get there.

 

Nowadays I am not an awesome surfer by any means, but I can at least catch a wave from time to time.

 

I challenge you to learn something new.  Bring your kids into the ring with whatever you're  learning and have them track your progress with you.  It will bring you closer and show them a great example of growth mindset. 

 

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