During middle school, many kids enter puberty, a time when self-esteem can be fragile Here are some things you can do to help your child through these turbulent years:
- Provide a loving home environment. Setting limits, being affectionate and using praise are all good ways to show love.
- Have reasonable goals for your child. Expecting too much or too little can hurt.
- Be positive. Notice things your child does right more than things he does wrong. For instance, show as much joy about good grades as you do concern about poor ones.
- Increase involvement in sports. Sports help some children become more confident and less depressed.
- Encourage persistence. Don’t let your child give up. Teach the importance of hard work and learning from mistakes.
Some serious signs of low self-esteem include academic problems, eating disorders, depression and frequent self-criticism. If your child has any symptoms that worry you, talk with a professional such as a school counselor.
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