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Child being given an award and praise for graduating class.

Former President and great scientist of India. Abdul Kalam was asked, ‘You have become the President of India and a great scientist. You have made this country powerful in many things. Who do you attribute to your achievement!

Dr. Kalam replied, “Many people are responsible for this. achievement. But my mother is mainly responsible.” Surprisingly, the questioner asked, ‘As far as I know your mother was illiterate. How could she help you to have such an intellectual and scientific success ?’

Dr. Kalam replied, ‘Yes ! You are right. My mother did not give me any intellectual or scientific knowledge. But my mother has taught me never to get tired of hard work. Don’t be afraid of failure. Be honest and do karma without expecting fruit. These are the principles that have made me successful. Who could have taught this except mother?’

The Power of Positive Reinforcement

Dr. Kalam’s mother taught him essential life lessons that transcended intellectual knowledge. She emphasized the importance of hard work, resilience, honesty, and selfless action. These principles not only shaped Kalam’s character but also propelled him to greatness.

As parents, it is crucial to adopt a similar approach in nurturing our children’s talents and virtues.

1. Acknowledge and Praise Publicly

Applauding and praising our children’s good virtues in public can significantly boost their confidence. Recognition in front of others reinforces positive behavior and motivates them to continue their efforts. Public acknowledgment acts as a powerful catalyst for a child’s self-belief and determination.

2. Offer Constructive Feedback Privately

While public praise is essential, offering constructive suggestions in private allows for open communication. Gentle guidance helps children understand their areas of improvement without diminishing their self-esteem. Private discussions provide a safe space for them to learn and grow without fear of judgment.

3. Patience and Consistency

Developing good habits and virtues in children takes time and consistent effort. As parents, we must exercise patience and provide continuous support. Encouragement and positive reinforcement, even in small achievements, can go a long way in reinforcing positive behavior.

4. Balance Positive Reinforcement with Guidance

Constantly highlighting every fault may not yield positive results. Instead, strike a balance between positive reinforcement and constructive criticism. Focus on nurturing their strengths while gently guiding them in areas that need improvement. A balanced approach ensures holistic development without overwhelming the child.


Dr. Abdul Kalam’s journey exemplifies the transformative power of positive reinforcement and constructive guidance. As parents, teachers, and mentors, our role is to nourish the potential within every child. By acknowledging their efforts, offering guidance, and maintaining patience, we can empower them to flourish and achieve remarkable success. Let us embrace these principles and pave the way for a generation of confident, resilient, and successful individuals.

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