You may notice that your child performs better at certain activities than their peers at a certain age. Talents do not always have to be passed down through generations – your child might be the first in the family to draw or paint well or the only one who has an interest in musical instruments. Whether you’ve discovered your child’s talent at home or through his/her preschool teacher’s feedback, it is important to know that talent comes in many forms and is best encouraged and nurtured from a young age.
Helping children to discover their talents, and providing adequate training, builds their confidence and is essential to their future success. It is then up to parents to recognise their child’s ability and take action to nurture it. So, what are the best ways to do so?
1. Observe their actions
Children are inquisitive by nature, and they are always eager to explore and learn new things. One good sign to look out for is your child’s attention and focus on a particular activity. A child with a particular talent in an area is able to sustain their interest better for a longer period. Unstructured play is the best time to observe your child. During these moments, children are given the freedom to explore and discover what interests them, allowing them to understand themselves better. For example, if your child is musically inclined, you might find him/her leading others in singing or even mimicking musical instruments even though he/she may not have expressed an interest in music previously.
2. Provide learning opportunities
A nurturing environment with plenty of opportunities and encouragement allows a child’s talent to be discovered and cultivated. As parents, it is important to provide such an environment for children during their developing years so as to give them the best head start and maximise their learning potential. It is also crucial to be involved in the process and engage in the activities yourself. A child’s brain is like a sponge that absorbs everything they see, hear, and do. Hence, by keeping to a specific routine and showing that you value dedication, you immediately affect how your child responds to regular and diligent practice.
When providing learning opportunities, consider your child’s interest levels and readiness to engage. This boils down to the first point of observing their actions. For example, if your child has better development of their gross motor skills, instead of sending them to art class, why not consider activities that will play to their advantage or enhance their talents, such as sports like badminton or basketball. Similarly, you can also encourage them to nurture their talent by introducing them to individuals who have excelled in their talent. For example, take them to a musical if you have observed that your child has a keen interest in music.
3. Developing talents
If you aspire for your child to enhance their talent, you need to be their biggest supporter as well as their toughest critic. To put it simply, your constant support can go far in developing their talents and encouraging them to aim high. The appropriate amount of support and encouragement helps to keep your child more grounded and also develop the confidence and the joy in persisting in what they are good at.
It is easy as parents to be swayed by the potential of their child, but note not to overdo the enthusiasm, exposure, and practice. Keep in mind that talent is worth pursuing – but only if they enjoy it. It is sometimes a better idea to let your child take a break here and there to try out something new and different.
To aid in developing your child’s talent, Raffles Kidz helps them discover their own interests through inquiry-based learning and enrichment module, which includes programmes such as Gourmet Chef, Culture & Drama, as well as Creative Artist. Besides discovering their own interests, we also provide other programmes that offer many social benefits. Book a tour with us to learn more about the various activities and programmes offered at our childcare centres today!