Excited to have a guest post from Zara Lewis give parents great tips for raising kids to become team players.
There’s no such thing as being too young to understand the importance of true team spirit. From their early years, children analyze and learn from different actions and behaviors that are presented in their everyday life. Learning how to be a good team player is no different. Kids see their parents not only as protectors but as role models. Therefore, it’s essential to provide proper guidance followed by concrete examples if you want your children to respect and value their individuality as well as accept and show the same respect to others.
1. Show respect.
As mentioned, respect is the key point that leads to team spirit. Even though you might think that kids are too young to be told and explained such spiritual matters, children compared to adults are actually a lot more aware of their own selves as well as the differences and similarities they share with others. With this being the case, make sure to explain and show how important it is for everyone to be themselves and that it’s perfectly fine to be different because different doesn’t mean wrong.
2. Teach responsibility.
In addition to being respectful towards others, children also need to learn to take responsibility for their actions. This is an essential part of being a good team player. Responsible behavior can be introduced through various activities and tasks, such as encouraging kids to tend to some house chores and the like. Of course, taking responsibility means that children won’t lie or blame others for their mistakes. If you want your child to be open and actually feel free to take responsibility for something without fear, refrain from punishing them when they come to you with the truth. Instead, make time for some meaningful talk.
3. Give positive encouragement.
Don’t forget to praise your children when they do something right or give their best to accomplish a goal even if they don’t succeed at first. The secret is in the way you praise them – don’t say final things such as “Don’t worry, that’s the best you can do, I’m very proud of you.” While they may not feel bad, kids also won’t try to challenge themselves further. Use encouraging phrases such as “You can do it!” or “That was great; I can’t wait to see what you’ll do next!” Once kids realize how important this kind of encouragement is, make sure to explain to them that they too can encourage someone else. Through hard work, they can connect with other children who are also putting their effort into something and your kids will show others the same kindness and encouragement that you showed them.
4. Follow the rules.
There’s no better way to teach your child to be a team player than engaging them in team sports. That way they will find a completely new sense of responsibility and respect when it comes to following the rules of the game. Team sports such as basketball, volleyball, soccer, etc. are not only perfect for kids to build team spirit but to socialize, have fun, and get the physical activity their growing bodies need. If you want them to learn the importance of following the rules before you send them off to the local youth sports center, find the time to be their coach as well as a fellow team player first. You can easily get some quality soccer equipment and spend your afternoons playing the game with your child. Of course, the whole family can participate and do their best in stressing the importance of following the rules as well as accepting criticism when necessary.
When it comes to explaining to your kids how to follow rules, accept criticism, show respect, be kind to others and take responsibility when need be, you have to carefully adjust your tone of voice and treat them as your equals who can understand. This is the proper way to make kids feel eager to improve and work on their personality. If you yell or show disrespect, your words, no matter how true and positive they might be, won’t be able to reach them.