As with many things in life, learning starts at home. One of the most important things you can equip your child with is good public speaking abilities.
As a parent, you play a key role in nurturing your child to speak fluently and confidently.
Here are some things that you can try doing at home to encourage your child to speak with confidence.
Tip 1 - Ask questions every day and listen intently
When your child tells you their stories, ensure that you listen carefully. No half-hearted listening while you scroll through messages on your phone, no TV playing in the background.
One way to teach them to express themselves is by prompting them with general questions such as “How was your day?” or “What did you do today?”.
It can also help if you switch up these questions to get a more detailed answer from them like, “What’s your most favourite part of the day? Why?” or “Who did you play with today? Did you meet a new friend? Tell me about her.”
As they tell you things, be sure to make constant eye contact. This is an important gesture that shows your child you’re engaged in the conversation. And when you do this, you teach your child the power of listening. They will learn that opinions of others matter, and that their peers should be heard and respected as well.
By listening intently and responding appropriately, you’re also encouraging your child to learn from others through meaningful conversations. Good communication, after all, isn’t just about speaking. Listening is equally important!
Tip 2 - Avoid baby language and model confidence
“Children are great imitators, so give them something great to imitate.”
Speak like an adult to your child and witness how they quickly develop their language and speech skills. When conversing with them, speak in proper English as much as possible, and try not to use short forms or slang words.
Of course, your child may not understand all the words you use as they’re still building up their vocabulary. In these instances, encourage them to ask you what the words mean.
This allows for a very natural development of your child’s vocabulary, and helps them understand how to use new words in the appropriate context. This will eventually help them express their thoughts better as they learn to incorporate new words or phrases in their everyday conversations.
It will also help if you model confident speaking in front of your children. For example, make an effort to speak clearly in everyday conversations with waiters or waitresses at restaurants, or when purchasing something from a storekeeper.
Tip 3 - Read books
Another way to improve and increase your child’s vocabulary is by reading extensively. By reading to them, or with them, your child will learn new sentence structures and phrases.
Following each reading activity, taking some time to discuss the story with them enables them to voice their thoughts and opinions regarding the book.
Again, ask prompting questions like “What was your favourite part of the book?”, “What part of the story would you change?”, or “What did you think of the story?”. This builds your child’s confidence in articulating their thoughts, and shows them that their opinions matter as well!
To further develop their language skills, having primary English tuition may also help your child become a better reader and speaker!
Tip 4 - Make videos for fun
Another fun way to get your child to become an excellent communicator is by making fun videos at home. You can do this video blogging style (essentially vlogging!) where you give them a mobile phone (or camera), and let them take the lead in creating their own video.
This could result in them talking about their new favourite toy or even giving a house tour! You can also engage in pretend role-plays and record your conversations. Or encourage them to perform by singing, dancing, or playing musical instruments.
Doing this enables them to be able to boost their confidence in expressing themselves in a fun environment.
Tip 5 - Encourage their participation in specific extra-curricular lessons
Joining extra-curricular activities like theatre, the school band, or the debate club can also help to boost your child’s confidence levels.
Through these activities, your child will learn how to socialise with people their own age as well as gain confidence in expressing themselves in front of a large audience!
Primary School Tuition - A Confidence Booster
Confidence isn’t learned overnight. It requires perseverance, patience, and commitment to build a child’s confidence.
However, there’s another way to help your child. Your child’s self-esteem can actually improve through attending primary school tuition classes.
When provided with the right resources and environment, your child gains the right knowledge and feels well prepared to tackle any new concepts in school. By excelling and knowing that they’re capable of achieving things on their own, this builds their confidence levels, both in school and in life.
At PAL Learning, we keep classes small with a teacher to student ratio of 1:5. This way, teachers can focus more on their students, giving them the best learning experience.
Enquire with us to find out more about our PAL Learning enrichment programmes today!