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Encouraging initiative in preschool children

Encouraging initiative in preschool children:
A. Encourage children to make and to act on choices.
Example:
1. Have a free choice time when children can select an activity or game.
2. As much as possible, avoid interrupting children who are very involved in what they are doing.
3. When children suggest an activity, try to follow their suggestions or incorporate their ideas into ongoing activities.
4. Offer positive choices: instead of saying “you can’t have the cookies now” ask ‘would you like the cookies after lunch or after naptime?”

B. Make sure that your child has a chance to experience success.
Example:
1. Introducing a new game or skill, teach it in small steps.
2. Avoid competitive games when the range of abilities with in a group is great.

C. Encourage make-believe with a wide variety of roles
Example:
1. Encourage the children to act out the stories or make up new adventures for favorite characters.

D. Be tolerant of accidents and mistakes, especially when children are attempting to do something on their own.
Example:
1. Use cups and pitchers that make it easy to pour and hard to spill.
2. Recognize the attempts, even if the product is unsatisfactory.
3. If mistakes are made, show the child how to clean up, repair or redo.

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