5 Top Tips to Encourage Boys
Try these top tips from Gary Wilson, expert on raising boys’ achievement, to encourage
independence in general and reading in particular – and loving both!
Boys need lots of praise. Often they see themselves as getting attention for all the wrong
reasons. So, give your son lots of approval for all the right reasons! A good rule of thumb
is to try to say three positive things to every negative.
When giving praise, try to be specific about what it is your son has done to earn the
If you want to help your son to do better, it’s important to get him talking (and listening!)
right from the start. You can help in several ways:
- Show an interest in what your son is doing (even if the subject doesn’t interest
you!) and ask questions about it.
- Talk with him, rather than at him.
- It’s important to be patient: listen with interest, keep the conversation going, ask
questions and don’t leap in with an answer. Sometimes this is easier said than
To help your son to be independent from an early age, you could encourage him to:
- get himself dressed in the morning
- make a list of everything he needs for school that day
- make his own decisions about a few things in the week’s routine.
You can do it!
Boys often feel that mistakes equal failure. A boy’s response is to say that he ‘can’t do
it’. To help your son feel that he CAN do it, give him lots of encouragement when he
does something well. It’s also important to remember that mistakes don’t equal failure;
it’s just the way we learn.