How do I develop my child’s strengths and interests?

Below are several suggestions for getting started:

  • Give directions that take into account whether your child is more of a visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learner. Recognize that what works for you may not work for her.
  • You may find it useful to ask your child how she would like you to give her information about the family schedule, chores, etc.
  • Talk to your child about strategies that work for her (particularly when there is a big test or project).
  • Make yourself available and set aside regular times to touch base with your child.
  • Notice and talk to your child when she appears worried or stressed out in school.
  • Praise your child for things she does well.
  • Praise your child for putting forth effort for more challenging tasks at home and at school.
  • Advocate for your child and teach her to advocate for herself.
  • Attend meetings and be in regular contact with teachers.
  • Be aware of what assignments are coming up. Many schools now have online systems for doing this.
  • Help your child select a school project based on her strengths (i.e., strong verbal skills - give an oral presentation, strong visual skills - create a poster, good written language skills - write a paper, or strong interpersonal skills - conduct an interview).
  • Help your child select her research topic by brainstorming areas of interest.
  • Facilitate extra-curricular activities and social opportunities that build on your child’s strengths and interests.
  • Take your child to the library and help her select books or articles about topics of interest.
  • Find out what kind of community events or service projects are available.
  • Have your child teach or show you something he is good at or proud of.