It’s important to celebrate children’s achievements both big and small. As you probably know, children’s self-esteem gets a significant boost when adults reward their achievements. All children should be rewarded for their achievements whether it be completing a school year, getting good grades, accomplishing a certain level in a sport or playing a major role in a piece for orchestra.
What you may not realize is that the reward doesn’t necessarily have to be monetary or materialistic. The key is to make sure to stay away from giving your children a bribe, because this could inadvertently teach them to only repeat the good behavior if they get rewarded.
Below are some suggestions for ways you can reward children’s achievements that are both monetary and non-monetary:
- Complimenting your children for what they have done.
- Surprising your children with a reward. This might be something like creating a lifelong memory by highlighting their achievement on a certificate and mounting it on the wall in an impressive plaque.
- Being available and ready to interact with your children to celebrate, such as making a special meal for him/her or holding a special activity.
- Sitting down with your children and asking them about how things are going with friends, school and activities.
- Encouraging good behavior.
- Baking something special.
- Letting your children pick out a new game or book.
- Throwing a party for your children and their friends.
- Having one parent take your children for a special day together.
Research shows that intrinsic rewards for children, praise leading to self-worth, are longer lasting and transferable, whereas extrinsic rewards are one-offs, non-transferable. So, we suggest you make sure to not overload your child with extrinsic rewards! Award certificates are a perfect balance between the two.