Every parent wants their kid to be extremely smart and kind. Parents work tirelessly to guide their children on every step as they have big dreams for their kids. They want to ensure that their kid is smart enough to go after what he wants in life. Hence, they are always open to learning the best advice on parenting. This article deeply touches the science-backed guidelines that will help you raise smart kids.
#1 Teach Social Skills: The First Step To Raise Smart Kids
According to a 20-year study done by Duke University and the University of Pennsylvania found some amazing insights about social skills. The researchers found a statistically significant correlation between social skills a kid has and their adult life. It clearly depicted how important social skills are in the development of a smart adult.
Every parent should understand the importance of social-emotional skills if they want to raise smart kids. Apart from academic skills, these non-cognitive skills help transform a kid into an adult who is self-regulated, optimistic and motivated. Moreover, social skills are needed to effectively communicate in society.
You should start teaching kids the following social-emotional skills:
- How to resolve issues with friends:
Kids generally have timid behavior which oftentimes results in a serious issue (according to kids) with their school friends. Of course, it is important for parents to be involved in the matter if things go bad. But if your kids can solve their issues on their own, they are more likely to develop a set of good social skills.
Hence, if you want to raise smart and kind kids, start by teaching them the value of friendship and how to resolve any issue that may pop in. In this way, you can ensure that your kid is able to find a solution on their own, thus developing a crucial social skill in them.
- Sharing is caring:
Kids generally tend to be possessive of their stuff and choose to keep it to them only. But teaching a kid the value of sharing will help you raise a smart and kind kid. You can start by telling them to share a piece of their chocolate with anyone around them be it a family member, friend or teacher. Later on, patiently teach them that the joy of sharing things is greater than the joy of having things.
- Be a good listener:
The easiest way to develop smart kids is making them a good listener by reading them aloud every day for just 10-15 minutes. This practice has not one but many positive impacts on your child’s intellectual ability. The benefits include increased vocabulary and concentration, your child will become a life-long reader and your bond with your child will improve.
#2 Raise smart kids by reducing screen-time for kids:
A number of scientific studies suggest that too much screen time can lead to irregular sleep patterns, childhood obesity, and lack of attention. Additionally, a study conducted by Greg L. West at The University of Montreal revealed that ‘shooter’ games can damage a kid’s brain.
You can begin by teaching your kid how the virtual world works how it affects us. As kids learn more by seeing than by other means, you also need to cultivate a healthy home environment.
For this, try to restrict the duration for which your kid can use a smartphone, tablet or TV. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the screen time for ‘entertainment’ should not exceed a total of 2 hours per day.
You can encourage your kid to become a creator rather than a passive consumer. For instance, you can further teach them to create things of their own such as painting, music, 3D modeling or computer programming
#3 Give limited praise to innate qualities like looks or intelligence:
Innate qualities are the characteristics that are naturally included in one’s own essential nature. These qualities differ with every second individual thus making them unique. It is okay to appreciate these qualities but only within a certain bound.
A study that happened at Stanford University suggested that praising children based on their innate quality like intelligence or looks can lead to under performance. That is why not spend too much time praising innate qualities can really help you raise smart kids.
Alternatively, as a parent, you can start praising and encouraging your child’s effort. For instance, appreciate their hard work, patience, discipline, determination, and persistence. In this way, you are teaching them the importance of effort over the end result.
#4 Keep Connected with your kids:
As per a survey by Common Sense Media, 28 percent of the teens reported that their parents are addicted to smartphones. What’s more? Another study by AVG revealed that 32 percent of teens felt unimportant when their parents use smartphones.
Shocking isn’t it? It definitely is, because we live in a hyper-connected and hyper-busy lifestyle. We live in a time where we feel a need to be connected with the internet. All this while, we forget that we actually live in a real-world where our family needs us.
With 24/7 internet facilities, we are connected online but are disconnected in reality. Therefore, it is crucial, if you want to raise smart kids, to focus on your kids too. Spend some quality time with your family once in a while by being distant from your smartphone.
#5 Assign daily tasks to your kids:
According to a data analysis done by the University Of Minnesota, the best predictor of success in young adulthood was whether a kid had performed tasks or chores when they were three to four years old. Yet, according to a poll by Braul Research, only 28 percent of parents said they assign daily chores to their kids.
The analysis serves as significant evidence that shows the role of daily chores in childhood development. Moreover, this practice is simple as it involves both parents and their kids. It also helps raise a smart kid with a sense of responsibility.
#6 Build a peaceful home to raise smart kids:
As per the University Of Illinois study review, families that involve frequent conflicts do more harm than families with a peaceful atmosphere. The study also revealed the negative effects of marital divorce on a child’s mental health.
Therefore, to raise a healthy, smart and kind offspring, an atmosphere of love and understanding should prevail in your home. This type of atmosphere will ensure that your kid learns how to live with harmony and have mutual respect. However, if any conflict arises then make sure you model fair-fighting, set boundaries and focus on resolution and understanding.
#7 Don’t be too harsh nor too soft:
In a study happened in 1966, Diana Baumrind classified the type of parents into three categories:
- Authoritarian Parents: These are the type of parents who are very strict on their spouse and only consider their own opinion or will. They attempt to control their kid’s behavior according to their set standard of conduct.
- Permissive Parents: These types of parents are way too lenient and approves almost everything their kids seek permission for. They are affirmative to a child’s desire, actions, and impulses.
- Authoritative Parents: These types of parents are the ideal ones with a balanced blend of love and discipline. They are quite expressive and understanding of their kid’s conduct and behavior. They put forward their point of objection in a reasonable and issue-oriented manner.
When a child has authoritative parents they get the right role model for regulation, discipline, understanding, and love. And these values from a critical factor in the attempt to raise smart kids.