Discover, Develop and Harness Your Child's Natural Abilities: 5 Things to Consider

It is the goal of every parent to discover the hidden talents within their child, help their child develop those talents, and align them as closely as possible with those things for which their child has a passion.

No particular school of thought has the monopoly on how to help your child get the most out of their natural abilities. That being said, there are things that you can do to discover, develop and harness your child’s natural abilities and to align them as closely as possible with their passions.  Here are five of them:

Watch

If it sounds simple, that is because it is. At the simplest level, your child will gravitate toward his natural abilities and passions. It may not happen until he develops a conscious awareness of his place in the world (generally around the age of four), but it will happen. When you begin to notice patterns in his behavior, specifically with respect to those behaviors in which he is engaged at his most content, it is time to take action.

Be a Liaison

For all intents and purposes, you are a liaison. In order to identify your child’s natural abilities, you need to expose her to a number of different things. Is your child particularly active? Is she especially outgoing? If so, you might consider signing her up for a sport, giving her social aspirations and her need to be in a constant state of physical expression an outlet in which she feels safe.

The more activities to which you expose your child, the more accurate an understanding you can begin to develop regarding the ways in which her natural abilities align with her passions, as well as how they influence one another.

Listen

Your child’s conversation with you will revolve around his interests. Listen for continuity in his pretend play (refer to tip #1) and those things about which he might extend curiosity. Keep the lines of communication with your child wide open. The more he feels that you are listening, the less hesitant he will be to express interest in those things which may or may not match his gender assignment.

It is important that as your child begin his appraisal of his own interests, the options afforded him remain untainted by your opinion of them. He may meet resistance in school and you will need to be there to stay the effects of social expectations on his self-esteem or continued interest in those things.

Keep The Dream Alive

No matter what your child tells you she wants to be when she grows up, support it. Under no circumstances should you inform your child that her dream is grandiose, unlikely or liable to create problems in other areas of her life. She will develop an understanding of how realistic her goal is as she matures. This is unavoidable. As this occurs, you might suggest she consider a dream that serves her interest in the same arena but that may afford her talents creative expression. Explain to her that her natural abilities may serve her in a practical way in alignment with her passion.

Afford Your Child Interest-Based Education

Finally, as your child matures and his need for an undergraduate education in his field becomes a necessity, see to it that he is afforded one. Raise this need to his attention initially as he prepares to enter high school as a reminder to keep his grades up, and again as he enters his junior year. Work with him to review schools with curriculums apt to cater to his needs, abilities and especially passion.

Help him to apply for as many scholarship programs as possible. Encourage him to seek work in a field in which he hopes to advance his education. Whatever dedication he can show to his niche on a college application, the more likely it will become that a college will accept him into the degree program of his choice on his first try.

Your child was born with a gift that they can give back to the world and the tools to make that objective a reality. These five tips should help you help your child become the person their head and heart can agree upon.

 

Parent Resources

Sonia Delaunay

This week, students learned about Sonia Delaunay, a French-Ukranian artist who cofounded the Orphism art movement which focuses heavily on geometric design and vibrant colors.

Fair use

“The infinite combinations of color have a poetry and a language much more expressive than the old methods.”

– Sonia Delaunay

Learn more about Delaunay here.

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