How To Teach Kids New Skills

Do you ever feel lost or unqualified when attempting to teach your children new skills? Do you find it hard to give them the right instruction or to explain things in a way that resonates with them? While that is a completely normal feeling, it’s not true!  You are absolutely capable of teaching new skills to your kids and we will teach you how!! We Use this strategy to help teach your child essential life skills. You have a lot of valuable information to give your kids…we can help you communicate that knowledge in a simple, yet effective way! These four steps can be used to teach anything!   Repetition is key. If your child isn’t listening to instructions just yet, give these steps time, patience, and lots of repetition. 

Motivation

In order for a child to learn a new skill, they need to be motivated. For instance, if they know that they will get rewarded with getting to play with their blocks if they say the word, “blocks,” then they will be motivated to use their skill of using words to describe what they want. Clearly communicate to them the reward for properly using their words.

Instruction

Now that we have established an understanding of motivation, the next step is to give clear instructions for your child to follow. By using a simple command phrase like, “Say ‘blocks’!” your child will understand that they are able to ask for what they want.  

Response

Now that you have given the child clear instructions, it is time for them to respond. The next action or behavior they should give is saying, “Blocks.” In order for the child to get what they want, the response needs to be what you asked for from them. If they don’t respond with your request, then they won’t get the reward they are looking for. 

Feedback/Consequence

The response you give back to your child’s behavior, whether positive or negative, is imperative in this last step. With positive reinforcement, a behavior will improve over time; and with punishment, a behavior will get worse over time. If your child is obeying your instruction, give them positive feedback such as “Thank you for saying ‘blocks’. Let’s build a castle!” This positive feedback will encourage them to continue following your instructions!

If your child decides not to obey your instructions, we encourage you to give corrective feedback instead of punishment. Your response should be calm such as, “Let’s try that again”. Keep your voice neutral and at the same level of your speaking tone while giving them the reinforcement that their response to your instruction was incorrect. Now that they know their response wasn’t correct, withhold the blocks and give the instruction again to give them the opportunity to respond correctly. This may take a few times, but they will eventually catch on and ask for other things! 

We understand that it can be exhausting to teach kids new skills and to repeat yourself  over and over…but the more you stay consistent and implement these techniques, the more you will begin to see your child’s response improve to your instructions. Stay positive and encourage enthusiastic reinforcement even in the toughest moments. You can do it!


Thank you so much for reading this article and for being part of the Radiant Parent Community! If you are like most of the parents we talk to, you have wasted hours googling different parenting tips and asking advice from friends and family, and all you have to show for it is contradictory advice that doesn’t work for your family. And you do NOT have time to waste! I have great news for you: The Radiant Parent Program is here to help you stay calm, confident, and joyful amidst the challenges of parenting! We will give you the most accurate parenting tips and advice, based on current research, so that your valuable time is spent learning best practice instead of hearsay. We will also give you group and individual coaching to help you take that knowledge and apply it to the unique needs of your family. Get started now with a 30-day free trial!

See you soon!

Melissa

Start Your Free 30-Day Trial


Disclaimer

This Multimedia Content (including video and article content) has been made for informational and educational purposes only. Discover Hope Behavioral Solutions Inc. (Discover Hope) does not make any representation or warranties with respect to the accuracy, applicability, fitness, or completeness of the multimedia content. Discover Hope does not warrant the performance, effectiveness or applicability of any sites listed or linked to it in any Multimedia Content.

The Multimedia Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or seen on the Site.

The information contained in the Multimedia Content posted represents the views and opinions of the original creators of such Multimedia Content and does not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Discover Hope Behavioral Solutions Inc. The mere appearance of Multimedia Content on the Site does not constitute an endorsement by Discover Hope Behavioral Solutions Inc. or its affiliates of such Multimedia Content.

Discover Hope hereby disclaims any and all liability to any party for any direct, indirect, implied, punitive, special, incidental, or other consequential damages arising directly or indirectly from any use of the Multimedia Content, which is provided as is, and without warranties.