This is excerpted from the book, Becoming the Parent You Want to Be: A Sourcebook of Strategies for the First Five Years" by Laura Davis and Janis Keyser, the ParentsPlace.com Parenting Experts.
One of the most important things we do as parents is let children know how special they are. That's our job. There is no one else in the world who is as crazy about our kids as we are. We ooh and aah over them, proclaiming that their wrinkled newborn bodies are the most beautiful things we've ever seen. We cheer them on when they first take on gravity by rolling over that arm that always seems to get stuck underneath. We root for them as they try to hit that ball with that big old plastic bat. The fact that we are excited and proud about the simplest things they do is crucial to children.
Praise is a tool many of us use to let children know that we are excited about their achievements. Many of us work hard to praise our children regularly. Some of us have come from families in which we got very little attention or positive feedback and it has been a big step to learn to praise our children.