(925) 284-1644 info@lafayetteacademy.com

Amazon sells over 100,000 books on “parenting.” Think about that for a second: over 100,000 books to help us become better parents, and most of us still need help.

We’re adding an “academic parenting” section to our blog, and we’re starting with “academic self-confidence.” Twice a month, we will include two practical ideas to help your children or you. We’re not going to drone on about reading books or doing homework, obvious advice that you’ve heard too many times.  We will give you suggestions that matter and that most people miss.  We have helped over 20,000 families at Lafayette Academy and we’ve seen it all. We want to pass on our most important lessons to our families, and we really hope that you share this with your friends.

Academic Self-Confidence

Today, we’re starting with academic self-confidence (not self-esteem) and optimism. We consciously went with academic self-confidence because self-esteem has already been covered too much and I think self-confidence is more helpful. How would unwavering self-confidence have impacted your childhood?  How can you help your children become more self-confident?

One way is to encourage your children to try and overcome their own obstacles before you help them. Here’s a shocking idea from a learning center owner: instead of immediately hiring a tutor when your child gets a bad grade, encourage him or her to figure out what went wrong and what he or she needs to do to correct the problem. Then, go with whatever your child suggests so he or she knows that you have confidence in him or her. If it doesn’t work out, there’s always a plan “T.”

Some students have become too dependent on tutors and this has unconsciously impacted their self-confidence.  I think our generation is more resourceful than our children’s because we didn’t have tutors (and Google) to solve so many of our problems.  Resourcefulness is a huge confidence builder for me and I suspect many of you feel the same way.  It’s no surprise that most of our highest achieving students have tremendous academic self-confidence because they consistently solve their own challenges, sometimes alone and sometimes with their peers. Some of them even set up their own tutoring appointments (imagine that!) and feel more accomplished when the successful appointment that they made goes well.

Self-confidence obviously comes from doing well, but it grows rapidly when people overcome obstacles.   Many successful entrepreneurs have unwavering self-confidence that has helped them overcome many obstacles to achieve their success.  Many of these people were not born with silver spoons in their mouths and are optimists.

Academic Self-Confidence & Summer Classes


Optimism is a hard trait to instill in your child.  Most optimists are innately positive, including many successful entrepreneurs. Do you think Steve Jobs ever doubted himself or the ultimate success of his products? Instead, you hear phrases like “she was born a pessimist” or “he has never hesitated to take on a new challenge” to describe optimists. So what can you do if you don’t have an optimistic child? For the answer to this question, come back next week when we release our next edition of “The Inside Story” blog.