I have had to practice this more on Johanna than Emily as my child has gone back to her Mum. I do not have a specific list of examples I wish to relate as I have found that acknowledgement and praise presents itself more often than I thought. Often for many little actions.
I have had to practice very hard at using more effective words in the act of recognition. I have been teaching Johanna to put her hand up when she coughs. When she started observing this request I told her what a polite little girl she was. So I think in terms of my growth, my style is changing and I am beginning to break some daft ways.
Oh another one! Emily is very skilled at making tiny little models out of crazy clay. When I acknowledge what she shows me I am now using “how dexterous you are”. She did not know what this word meant but, she does now. So this exercise of using meaningful words to describe an action worthy of praise or recognition is more specific and actually teaches the child more about her own skills and what the skill or action is in language.
Perhaps children may learn quicker through this form of praise what it is we are trying to teach them. How can we expect them to be “polite” if they can’t associate actions that make one polite?