England: ‘five praises a day’ leads to better behaved children

06 December 2019

Children who are praised by their parents at least five times a day are better behaved, calmer and more attentive than those who are not.

Five Praises a Day’ is a new parenting approach put together by researchers at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU). Parents are encouraged to ‘catch their children being good’ and intentionally praise them as a reward.

DMU has produced a booklet for parents which explains the method, including a ‘praise diary’ to act as a record.

Chartered psychologist Sue Westwood, a senior lecturer at DMU, said: ‘As parents, it’s so easy to fall into the trap of paying attention to our children when they are doing something wrong. This approach supports parents by helping them learn how to praise effectively.’

Tips include praising effort, not ability, and looking for little changes. 

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