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LittleButch
LittleButch asks:
Q:

How do i get my 4 year old to be more assertive with her peers, learn to stand up for herself and stop being a follower?

She has been bought up with positive discipline, taught to share and be nice to her peers. I have noticed though on many occasions she is “too nice” always the one backing down when there is conflict. Never getting the chance to play with anything she chooses. It is not always the older bigger kids it happens with our 2 year old nephew too.
This is just a brief I could go on and tell you many examples of the observations I have made but I am just wondering if there is reading material I could get hold of so I can direct her towards becoming a more confident kid.
In Topics: Bullying and teasing, Discipline and behavior challenges
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Dr.Monika
Feb 17, 2010
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What the Expert Says:

Confidence comes from having a high self-esteem.  Positive reinforcement is absolutely an integral part of discipline and an important part of helping your child develop a high self-esteem.  Your daughter is only 4 years old and she still learns how to be confident.  Be patient while providing instruction on how to make choices and decisions.  Help her develop responsibility and teach her to deal with mistakes and disappointments.  

Read this article on Encouraging Self-Esteem:

http://www.pluggedinparents.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=442&Itemid=0
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Additional Answers (2)

kat_eden
kat_eden , Parent writes:
Hello,

I have a son who's now 7 who sounds very similar to your daughter in terms of his tendency to get "run over" by other kids. I used to worry about it a lot when he was your daughter's age, thinking that it would get worse over time. But actually, he's gotten more confident over time, while still remaining a really "nice" kid.

We try to find "safe" situations for him to assert himself when he wants something. For example, we encourage him to order for himself at restaurants. Something as simple as asking a waitress for pancakes was incredibly painful for him! He would speak so quietly that she couldn't hear him so I would always repeat his order for him but still give him lots of praise and positive reinforcement for trying. Now he's learned to speak loudly and clearly so that he's always understood. I now see him using the same confident voice when he speaks to other kids.

I also tried to help him on the playground without doing things for him. If he wanted to borrow someone's sand toy, I would make him ask the child himself. I would always go with him (and again, repeat for him if he couldn't ask in a loud voice). It was great for him to learn that he could get what he wanted by asking.

Of course, not all kids "play fair" and I was heartbroken many times watching him wait forever for a turn on the swings or with a certain toy as other kids jumped in front of him. But again, I would just try to stand with him and support him in asserting himself in the line. I would never do it for him, but I would whisper in his ear "now say 'can I please have a turn now?'".

He also got run over quite a bit by his younger brother who has NO trouble asserting himself. I would never intervene for my older son in those situations. I would say "you're older and bigger - when it's your turn take your turn - you can do it!". Trying confident interactions on younger siblings (or cousins) is great practice!

I think the most important thing is that you not expect your daughter's situation to change over night. Try to appreciate all the wonderful things that come with her being sensitive. Believe me you'd much rather have that than a pushy kid! Then just keep supporting and encouraging her and give her lots of time.

I hope this helps!

Kat
> 60 days ago

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petrayoung
petrayoung writes:
you need to be more rough with her she thinks she is going to be getting easy for the rest of her life.  ask her some questions like...This person was really meen to mommy at work and they pushed me what should mommy do?
> 60 days ago

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