How Words Can Affect Our Child?

Have you ever heard a teacher yell at students, asking the child to complete their homework? Or heard a parent yell at their child in the park, just to stop them from cycling too fast?  Although, in these incidents the teacher and the parent are looking out for the child, the weight that these words carry can ultimately raise a question mark in the child’s mind about themselves. The tone and the loud voice often goes unrealized but the child does not ignore it, they learn a new behaviour of shouting while instructing someone. A child’s mind is extremely moldable at a young age and the words spoken or the environment created around them will certainly influence their psychological development.
It gets very easy for an adult person to louden their voice and direct the child but little do they know, they’re only causing damage to the kids. We might not realise it but it has its effects more than we know.

Let’s understand what areas of a child's life do we impact with our words and how: 

Disturbs their faith in themselves:

When a child constantly hears a teacher or a parent pointing out their flaws in a negative tone, with the use of wrong words and in a loud voice, they ultimately develop a feeling of not being good enough. It's often overseen when a parent does this because this behaviour has been learnt over the course of time and been accepted as normal. This has also led to a negative impact on the kids and their confidence in their own strengths. 

Affects their sense of identity:

Everyone needs to hear words of affirmation once in a while, specially kids who require appreciation at every step. Teachers very often point out children’s errors in the middle of a class and mannier times, it becomes a medium of entertainment while the kid is feeling ashamed of their own selves.  The entire image that child has of himself is crushed and it leads to loss of identity.  For children to misunderstand themselves or lose the identity built since childhood, it gives birth to additional setbacks in their personality development. 

Affects their interpersonal relationships:

The relationships that children form in childhood are of the purest form. And the behaviours learnt at that age are somehow so deep rooted that they become very difficult to be altered. When we speak harsh words to our kids, even if they've done something wrong, they may perceive it as an acceptable way to react when someone else appears to have done something wrong. This creates several complexities in their interpersonal relationships, ultimately causing hindrance to their personal growth. 

Let's discuss some ways to use our words wisely with our children:-

Being more sensitive:

When a 2-4 years old old child makes a mistake, our focus is to reassure the child that it’s okay to have done a mistake, but as soon as the child grows up to be 6 or 7years old , we suddenly change our approach and treat them like they have committed a blunder which cannot be undone, some even get punished. It’s extremely important for teachers to be sensitive while dealing with such situations because the child is already feeling guilty and being shouted at will not help. The child has to be dealt with care and taught ways to not make that mistake again.  

Influencing children to use language skillfully:

While we keep in mind our own language and ways to frame sentences while talking to children, it is equally important to make them learn the use of language and the correct set of words. Children, at a young age, must be taught how they can use their words skillfully so as not to hurt someone else and convey their message with dignity.

Teaching morally right or wrong language:

Maintaining a sense of respect while talking to someone is very crucial. This is our responsibility to teach our kids how to talk respectfully.  Every family has different cultural values, but schools are a place where children from different backgrounds come together and build their personalities. This places the school teachers at an extremely significant position where they need to teach each child the moral values and the morally correct set of words to use while communicating. 

In this blog, we have understood the importance that words hold, how they might negatively impact children and how as parents and teachers, we play a major role in teaching them the correct way of communicating.

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