I found last weeks lessons very tough and emotional. I feel part of nurturing your children’s self esteem is evaluating your own childhood. I have been guilty of the same things as my parents by rote praising. I don't think they have been believing the praise.
Like mother like sons. I have really concentrated on acknowledging and describing my kids little daily achievements. the results have been heart warming. I had my first opportunity on Wednesday morning.
While I was trying to get ready for the day Jack and Theodore were playing nearby and having a really wonderful time. Jack was being really gentle and caring with Theodore and sharing his little treasures, (not the usual behaviour) I said to Jack that he was a really wonderful brother. I saw how well he was sharing his things and being gentle with his little brother.
He looked at me and said "I know mommy" so I told him I just wanted him to know that I had noticed how sweet he was being. His little face lit up and he just said thanks and carried on. He has definitely been playing in a gentler way with Theodore since then. There have been numerous little successes like this but this is the one that stands out.