Want to raise successful children? Science points to 7 traits parents of successful children have.
1. They have high expectations When parents set high expectations of their children, the children follow suit. This is according to data from research by the University of California.
Prof. Neal Halfon and his colleagues surveyed 6,600 children and took data from their scores on standardized tests. For the kids who did the worst on scores, 57% had parents who expected them to attend college. On the other hand, 96% of the kids who did the best had parents who expected them to go to college.
2. They belong to a higher socioeconomic status An American researcher from Stanford University, Sean Reardon, said that the achievement gap between high and low-income families have been getting wider: “roughly 30% to 40% larger among children born in 2001 than among those born 25 years earlier.”
Unfortunately, kids from poorer families struggle with financial burdens which often hinder them from attaining a higher education.
3. They have attained a certain education level Parents who finished high school or college were more likely to have children who did the same, according to a 2009 study by Green State University.
Dr. Eric Dubow, a researcher from the study, found that “parents' educational level when the child was 8 years old significantly predicted educational and occupational success for the child 40 years later.”
4. They provide their kids early academic skills Early development of math skills can lead to more successful children, according to a 2007 study by the Northwestern University.
Co-author Greg Duncan said “Mastery of early math skills predicts not only future math achievement, it also predicts future reading achievement.”
This gives more reason to make sure children are getting the education they need especially at the crucial early stages of development.
5. They are sensitive to their children's needs Children who receive sensitive care in their first three years do better in academic tests in childhood, had healthier relationships and had greater academic attainment, said a 2014 study by the University of Minnesota.
“This suggests that investments in early parent-child relationships may result in long-term returns that accumulate across individuals' lives,” said co-author and psychologist Lee Raby. So, moms and dads, don’t neglect that TLC.
6. They make quality time with their kids It’s the quality and not the quantity that counts when it comes to spending time with the kids, said research by the Bowling Green State University.
Emotions are just as contagious as a cold. A stressed-out mom can have a poor effect on her kids. It may cause the children to be stressed as well, said co-author and sociologist Kei Nomaguchi.
7. They teach a growth mindset Where a parent attributes a child's success will have an effect on the child’s future. For example, if a child does great on a test, does a parent congratulate her for being smart or for working hard? Study shows that “growth minded” kids or kids who thrive on challenges and are able see failure not as a sign of unintelligence but as an opportunity for growth are able to achieve more.
The study by Stanford University asked 4-year-olds to choose between finishing an easy puzzle or a difficult one. The “fixed minded” kids chose the easier puzzle since it would help them look smart. “Growth minded” kids wanted the hard puzzles since their sense of success was tied with becoming smarter.
Bottom line, teach kids not to rely too much on their natural talents but to cherish the success of hard work as well.