Quitting Is Not an Option: 5 Ways to Teach Kids Perseverance

By Carmen Sognonvi
Originally published at http://www.urbandojo.com/blog

Throughout July 2011, we’ll be working on the concept of “perseverance.”

All our discussions and activities will aim to help our students understand what it means to never quit, and to stick with your goals until they are achieved.

In this video, Dr. Robyn Silverman, creator of our character development curriculum Powerful Words, gives advice to a parent who’s looking for ways to teach a child that quitting is not an option:

We know it’s best for kids to see something through to the end so they can feel successful, but that doesn’t always happen.

Dr. Robyn recommends using the following 5 techniques to teach your kids about perseverance.

1. Adjust the language your family uses
Use language that demonstrates to your child that their family is filled with people who don’t give up. Say phrases like “we persevere,” “I can do it,” “winners never quit,” or “I will never give up.”

2. Point out perseverance when you see it
If your child is showing perseverance, notice it and tell then you’re proud. Tell them you know it’s difficult, and ask them how they feel about persevering. Keep track of their accomplishments and record them in a scrapbook or display them on the fridge. Let people know that your kids persevere.

3. Be a persevering role model
Your child should know that when you commit to something, you follow through with it. There’s no better person for them to learn from than you.

4. Agree on a family motto about perseverance
Call a family meeting to decide on a motto related to perseverance. You can come up with your own, but here are a few to inspire you:
“When we fall down, we stand up.”
“Always finish what you started.”
“Don’t give up.”
“We will try. Never fear. We will always persevere!”

5. Remind your child that to start something is to commit to something
Your child should understand that whenever they start an activity or learn something new, they need to commit to that thing. Whether it’s for just one session or for a whole year, they should be fully committed for that period of time. Have your child sign a commitment paper and display it in a public place so everyone knows.

The more you personally believe in the importance of perseverance and model it for your family, the more they will know that quitting is not an option.

There’s no better way to drive home the lessons we teach at Urban Martial Arts than by reinforcing them… well, at home! To give you ideas for conversation topics, here’s a run-down of what we’ll be discussing this month:

Week 1 – Perseverance defined: What it means to keep going and never quit
Week 2 – What gets in our way? Fears, priorities, character flaws and peer pressure
Week 3 – What keeps us going? Support-Passion-Action-Reason-Knowledge (SPARK)
Week 4 – What are the benefits of perseverance? Goal-getting, character, & confidence

We’d love to hear how your conversations go with your child so do share with us!