Jungle Gyms Build Confidence
By simply observing children, you can determine how they perceive themselves by their appearance, their interaction with others, their ability to make decisions, as well as their mental aptitude.
The characteristics of a confident child include self-respect, feelings of competence, believing that they belong and that they matter, and being able to influence others.
When confident children face challenges, they can manage their frustration, and are able to take risks, complete projects and realise a sense of achievement.
Children with low self-esteem often believe themselves to be incompetent, ineffective, undeserving, and of no consequence.
These children are often pessimistic about themselves and feel powerless to change their situation.
They will avoid taking risks or placing themselves in situations which would cause them distress.
While we all have positive and negative thoughts about ourselves, our level of confidence is greatly influenced by parental attitudes.
Children require parental approval, recognition and love in order to develop a healthy view of themselves and to learn to love, accept and approve of themselves.
Parents can help their children build confidence by teaching them that it is okay to make mistakes and to try again, and by allowing them to be autonomous in certain areas.
Teaching your children that it is okay to make mistakes, helps them to understand that mistakes are part and parcel of the learning process, and not a reason to give up.
It provides them with the freedom to look for other ways of doing things, and helps them to learn to weigh the consequences of an action before making a certain choice.
Another key to confidence is a good sense of autonomy.
This refers to a child's ability to think and act independently of others.
Acquiring physical strength is another factor of great significance for a child's self-esteem.
Confident, healthy, happy children are usually physically strong.
Participating in sports, climbing on a jungle gym and playing to build physical strength help children to be more comfortable in their bodies, while also building confidence.
"A great way to build confidence is through play and interaction with other children on a jungle gym," explains Bradley Hoole of http://www.
"Firstly, there is no right or wrong way to play on a jungle gym.
Making a 'mistake' on a jungle gym is limited to the children's own discoveries of a better way to climb up, over or under than they had tried previously.
They are free to try as many different things as they can imagine, and to weigh up the consequences of each.
This has a tremendously positive effect on their confidence.
"A jungle gym also creates the perfect opportunity for encouraging autonomy, as the children's play is independent of an adult's physical participation on the apparatus itself.
Jungle gyms are simply not built for adults and allow the child to step out from underneath the umbrella of Mom or Dad or nanny.
They are able to play on their own, without direct influence or control of the supervising adult.
This allows them to participate as independent individuals in the world, exploring their current limitations and learning the skills to push those boundaries further and further, gaining strength and trust in their skills! The more they play and exercise their bodies, the more they develop coordination, creativity, physical strength and confidence.
" Confident children are eager to try out new things in life.
They are unafraid of making mistakes because they understand that mistakes do happen, but the risks have been evaluated and deemed worthy of the chance to do something they really want to.
Confident children will also take responsibility for their actions should something not have gone according to plan, without laying the blame upon someone else.
They will learn from the experience and will know how to do it better the next time.
They will also have the courage to try again even though they know they might not do it perfectly once more.
Children who are confident and who trust in themselves know that they are capable of success in life! Helping your children to build confidence by providing encouragement, teaching them how to deal with mistakes and allowing autonomous play, is possibly one of the greatest gifts you can give them.