101 Words of Affirmation Every Child Wants to Hear {With Free Printable}

101 Words of Affirmation Every Child Wants to Hear {With Free Printable}
November 18, 2013 Matthew L. Jacobson

matthewljacobson-com_childrenWhen it comes to parenting, affirmation isn’t the only thing . . . and it isn’t everything, but it is vital to the healthy emotional development of our children. To maintain a spirit of positive affirmation in our home, I have to focus on this need because it doesn’t always come naturally.

Do you recognize the need to build up your children every day, too? This list of phrases will encourage the child who hears them from a sincere parent.

There are so many “voices” in this world telling our kids they don’t measure up. Behind every young child who believes in him, is a parent who believed in him first. Let’s go on the offensive and help our girls and boys see how truly wonderful they are. Here are some suggestions to get started:

1) I think you’re fantastic!

2) You did a great Job!

3) Thanks for being such a great kid!

4) You make me smile.

5) I appreciate the young man (woman) you are becoming.

6) I like you.

7) Spending time with you reminds me of how special you are.

8) Would you like to go to the store with me? I like it when you come along.

9) You are an interesting person.

10) I like how your mind works.

11) Thanks for being such a hard worker.

12) You are a great example.

13) I was just telling Dad/Mom how proud I am of you.

14) I’m grateful God gave you to me.

15) You did that so well.

16) Great job on your homework!

17) You’re so handsome/beautiful.

18) You see things really clearly.

19) Good thinking.

20) You give the best hugs.

21) Your so brave!

22) That was a really kind thing to do.

23) You’re so smart!

24) Thank you for honoring me.

25) You’re a great person.

26) You are the kind of friend I wanted when I was your age.

27) Wow! You’re fast!

28) You’re really thoughtful.

29) I appreciate you so much.

30) You are a diligent young man/woman.

31) You make me laugh!

32) You’ve got a great sense of humor.

33) You did that? You’re amazing!

34) You are an honest young man/woman – God likes that.

35) Wow! You did a great job cleaning your room!

36) You made this all by yourself? It tastes fantastic!

37) What a great idea!

38) You’ve got a lot of ‘grit’!

39) I’m happy when you’re around.

40) Look at all those muscles! (when he’s very young)

41) I’m really proud of you.

42) You have a big heart!

43) You’re so generous.

44) You inspire people when you do things like that!

45) When you did (    ) it showed a lot of self-discipline.

46) How did I get the Best Kid In The World?

47) I just know you’re going to be successful.

48) You have some amazing gifts.

49) You can achieve anything you desire.

50) God created you for a special purpose.

51) Your life matters.

52) I don’t know where you’re going to end up, but it’s going to be awesome!

53) You’re so tough!

54) I love how you never give up!

55) You could run a small country! Maybe a large one!!

56) You have strong character.

57) King Solomon talked about you: A man skilled in his work will stand before kings.

58) You’re one in a million!

59) My respect for you is really growing.

60) I don’t deserve a daughter/son like you!

61) You make being proud of your son/daughter so easy.

62) You could be President!

63) Keep practicing like that and you’re going to be the best in the world!

64) You showed a lot of courage when you (   )

65) It takes a big person to be honest like you just were.

66) I know you can conquer your fear!

67) You’ve got what it takes!

68) You’re a real go-getter!

69) Do you know how rare people like you are?

70) You’re really polite – I like that in a young man/young woman.

71) You do quality work!

72) I’m grateful for you.

73) You are a blessing to me and Mom/Dad.

74) There is no one quite like you.

75) How did you come up with that?

76) It’s a rare thing to find someone trustworthy like you.

77) I know you can figure it out!

78) You worked until the job was done – impressive!

79) When you stood up for what was right, God said, “Well done!”

80) You’re looking sharp!

81) You are a special individual.

82) God wanted to bless me so He gave me you.

83) What a great job you did!

84) I know you will achieve your dreams.

85) This world would be a better place if more people were like you.

86) You figured this out by yourself? Amazing!

87) What you did for your (me, friend, brother, sister) was really kind.

88) Grandpa and/or Grandma think you are spectacular!

89) You are going places!

90) You showed a lot of maturity when you responded like that.

91) I can see your future . . . it’s so bright, I’m going to need sunglasses!

92) You are the son/daughter I prayed for.

93) Every parent wishes they had a son/daughter like you.

94) I don’t know what I would do without you.

95) I love the fact that I can rely on you.

96) Dad/Mom and I were just talking about how wonderful you are.

97) Thank you for loving me.

98) I can see your inner strength.

99) You stood for the Truth – that’s what good men/women do!

100) Awesome – that’s what you are!

101) I love you!

Dad & Mom, you have a powerful voice in the life of your child. Our kids aren’t perfect but if we’re paying attention, we can catch them in their best moments. Just think what a positive difference saying a few of these each day will make in the heart of your child.

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P.S. You might also enjoy 103 Words of Affirmation Every Husband Wants to Hear and 102 Words of Affirmation Every Wife Wants to Hear.

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80 Comments

  1. parentingpassage 3 weeks ago

    Thanks a lot for this awesome list :-).

  2. Jennifer 7 months ago

    Thank you

  3. Kim 11 months ago

    Very helpful information . . .

  4. Mary 1 year ago

    Thank you both for enriching so many lives with what seems like a “no-brainer” to some of us old-school believers :o) The lists are amazingly helpful and I like to think I’ve attempted to do this my entire child-rearing life. Luckily, I was a mom (and now g’ma and almost gg’ma) who had the chance to assist in my boys’ school classes. I learned while there, how much of an impact my words had, as well as the time I could give to show all of the kids how important they are to me and our world. I truly wish I could have been as gifted as you to share that knowledge on such a large scale as you have done so eloquently! BRAVO!!! Keep UP The Magnificent Job!

  5. Delilah 1 year ago

    I was trying to download the free printables and the download link isn’t working. Is there something that I am doing wrong?

  6. Nicole 1 year ago

    Hi there, would love to have these to remind me to speak up… Is the link not working still? I can’t get it to download… Thanks so much

  7. Tere Howard 1 year ago

    The link does not work.

  8. M. 1 year ago

    Good Morning. This list is very helpful but the download link is not. I suppose it is still not working. Thank you for the list and your prompt attention in fixing this so that the list can, indeed, be downloaded! God bless.

  9. Tanya 1 year ago

    Could you please email 101 positive things to say to your child? Thank you very much.

  10. Jenn 1 year ago

    These are so great! I was wanting to print one out to remind myself but neither of the links are working? Am I doing something wrong? Every time I click on the download link it it takes me back up to the top of the article.

    • Author

      We’ll check it out and fix the link . . . thanks for the heads-up!

      • Karin 1 year ago

        Same here. Is it not fixed yet? I’d love to download it. 🙁

        • Heather 1 year ago

          This is very cool, but it won’t download – just takes us back to the top of the page. Thanks!

          • Author

            check it out now . . . and let me know if it’s working for you!

      • Cindy 1 year ago

        Still couldn’t download… any luck fixing? or is it my computer?! Thanks!

  11. Toney Amundsen 2 years ago

    Thought-provoking article

  12. KimByrd 2 years ago

    Even though I don’t have children YET, I do have other children in my life. And the funny thing is that yesterday I was sharing with the mother of my God daughter that she is an awesome little girl and needs to hear it verses always hearing the negative things she does. When I was a child my dad told me to learn enough for the both of us and that set me on a course to love learning. As an adult he told me that when one thing doesn’t work try something else but never quit. My mother was my cheerleader who encouraged me to try. Saying that, even if you didn’t have great parents, that doesn’t mean that you can’t be one. Your children will remember whatever you post into them; good or bad. If you don’t have children like myself you are still a M.O.M. (Minister Of Motivation) to someone even if it’s 5 minutes out of the week. Thank you for this post and your words of how to lift up children. They are the future. I will be emailing it to anyone I know that has influence on children.

  13. Tanya 2 years ago

    Please update 40 so it is not geared only for boys. Girls can be strong and athletic too!

    • Author

      Any of these can be modified for appropriate use, depending on your family make-up.

  14. Sabrina Ward 2 years ago

    Could you email me the 101 positive affermation every child wants to here?

  15. Tana 2 years ago

    We have noticed perfectionistic tendencies in our two yr old boy since he was a toddler. He won’t try things until he is 100% confident he will be successful. First example was crawling, then walking, and now with speech. He is so easily discouraged and we really don’t know why. We try to be very encouraging. This morning I had made up a song about his breakfast foods, he actually began singing it back to me! We were so excited! We kept singing it and dancing, then he said the words wrong and he just shut down. He wouldn’t accept any encouragement or hugs. It breaks my heart seeing my 2 yr old already struggling with discouragement! Any suggestions?

    • Author

      Two suggestions:

      1) Ask yourselves (your husband and you), “Are we modeling any behavior/attitudes that reinforce a perfectionistic tendency.” For instance, how did your 2 year old know he was saying the words wrong? Did you correct him to get him to pronounce them correctly? Parents often try to correct speech in young children far too early. If this is the case and you did correct your son, recognize that doing so was a mistake and reinforcing the very thing you didn’t want your child to be concerned with – perfectionism. Saying words incorrectly simply doesn’t matter at this age. Perfectionism is, essentially, pride. Everyone of us has a degree of pride. Parents who are concern with how others will perceive them based on their children’s behavior (pride) often put great pressure on the child to conform to a given standard of behavior when in the presence of others. I’m not saying these things apply to you, as we don’t know each other but, if there is something here that applies to your situation, ask God to reveal to you how you can overcome these tendencies.

      2) Get Ted Tripp’s Book and work book, Shepherding a child’s heart

  16. Mary 2 years ago

    What a wonderful list! Thank you! I was wondering if you have written one for teens?

  17. Caroline 2 years ago

    Matthew, May I post 31 of your affirmations on my blog. Of course I will refer a link back to you, stating where I go these 30 affirmations.

    I will be posting them in a December Calendar for parents to know that gifts our not everything. Love and Words are the greatest gift you can give to your child. Of course God has a very important role in this all. Love to hear back from you

    • Matthew Jacobson 2 years ago

      Absolutely. You’re always welcome to post my content. The only thing I ask is a link to the website (and a word from the user about the site is also appreciated!)

  18. Renu 2 years ago

    Learning to do this however clumsy or difficult it appears also teaches our kids to take on things that are difficult

  19. Lynn 3 years ago

    I adored my father and he was a good father and often a very, very loving man. He was an excellent provider and taught me so much about how to behave, think, be in the world, and superb advice on a plethora of subjects and actions. Unfortunately, he also had a fierce temper. Once he told me I made him sick. That statement has stuck with me for over 50 years now. When I think about the fact that I made him sick, it always brings me to tears. How I wish I could have pleased him and made him proud of me. It has always been a lesson to me to be very careful in what I say to children. Have I been perfect? No, and I cling to the fact that love covereth a multitude of sins. Tell your children you are sorry when you have said or done something that diminishes them and follow the apology with a request for forgiveness, a hug, and a statement of love. Thank you, Matthew L. Jacobson for this fantastic list of encouragements for children and the admonition to watch what we say.

  20. Verheecke Gino 3 years ago

    Thanks for those very useful affirmations and at the same moment for reminding us parents that we can help our children to construct their lives in a positive and confident way.God Bless you!

  21. I am a Storyteller and often start my storytelling program with affirmations, which are a huge hit. I really like the one you had about being bright and needing sunglasses. I think I’ll add that one saying, “I’m so bright, you’ll need your ray-bans on” and we’ll circle our eyes like glasses on us.

    One I tell the kids, which I received from a 1st grade teacher, “I am so smart, I can kiss my brains”, and another one from a rap song actually, “If I was you, I’d miss me, too”. All can be changed into affirmations we give our kids, not just for them to say. Peace,

  22. catherine 3 years ago

    If you lined up all the (insert age) year old boys in the world, I would choose you every single time! i have said that since the beginning and my oldest is 18! love the article!

  23. Leah 3 years ago

    Although I do think it’s important to use positive affirmation with our children, I wonder where would this cross the line to feeding ego. I don’t mean “ego” as in respectful self confidence. for those of you who have studied “ego” will know exactly what I mean. Also, I want my child to feel these affirmations within themselves and not need to hear it from Mom and Dad. Don’t get me wrong, I think affirmations are very important, and we do affirm with our kids here at home. I’m just wondering if it can be taken too far?

    • Matthew Jacobson 3 years ago

      Thanks for your comment, Leah. There is no doubt that it is possible to take affirmation too far. Balance is required here, as in all areas. We need to encourage and affirm but we also need to correct and discipline. This is only one aspect of parenting – one that is often lacking in Christian homes. But, your caution is well taken. Again, thanks.

      • Leah 3 years ago

        Thanks Matthew! I appreciate your reply! Balance is a perfect reminder. Affirmations, and balance 🙂

  24. trace 3 years ago

    I love this, I wish there was a printable version.

    • Matthew Jacobson 3 years ago

      Stay tuned, Trace, my assistant is designing one, as we speak.

      • Claudette 2 years ago

        A printable version will be greatly appreciated! Thanks

        • Matthew Jacobson 2 years ago

          Finally, Claudette! The Free Printable version is available here: https://faithfulman.com/2013/11/18/450/ just scroll down to the bottom!

          • Aleta 9 months ago

            Thank you so much for this awesome list of affirmations for children! However, I’m unable to download it after several attempts. Would you be able to email it to me along with the affirmations for wives and husbands? They’re so great that I want them all! Bless you!

          • Author
            Matthew L. Jacobson 8 months ago

            recently fixed . . . check the link!

  25. shreekanth 3 years ago

    thank you …..i am thankful to you. I have decided to print and distribute these words to my known circle.

    • Matthew Jacobson 3 years ago

      Shreekanth, you’re welcome. Thanks for the encouragement. God’s best.

  26. Andrada 4 years ago

    I absolutely love your message! Children should really hear, especially from their parents, such words of encouragement. I hope that when I will have children of my own, to remember every word. Too many grow up without support, and take life all on their own, without knowing how beautifully courageous they are. I would like to ask you if you agree to let me take your article and translate it into romanian, on my blog. I hope that this way, many parents will at least think about this wonderful and sincere message. Thank you!

    • MJAdmin 4 years ago

      Please feel free to translate the article in romanian but all uses must include my website and full name. Thank you for your kind words.

      • Andrada 4 years ago

        Thank you so much! Of course I will include your website and name. I respect your thoughts and life experiences. I am very much grateful. God bless you and your family!

  27. Sarah 4 years ago

    I love these and really see the value in affirming my beautiful children everyday. In a world where children (and adults) can easily be torn down, why would we want to be anything but a safe haven and support group for our kids? Unfortunately my husband doesn’t see this the way I do… Thankfully I have the gift of Christ to share with my children and recently took the opportunity to share with my son a deeper level of Gods love. I said . . . God will never be mad with you. He loves you so much and I want you to turn to God for your worth . . . God put you on this earth to do great things and His plan for you is better and bigger than anything you can think of. You are useful and valuable to God. That is a hard convo to have with your 8 year old but I pray that with every tear down he faces, he will remember his identity in Christ and will use these situations to bring him closer to our Father. Would you please pray for my family?

    • MJAdmin 4 years ago

      What a blessing God gave to have you as his mother! I’m praying for your family right now.

  28. Kelli Deiman 4 years ago

    I like to tell my kids that they make my heart happy, but I LOVE the look on their faces when I tell them!

  29. MJAdmin 4 years ago

    They do grow up fast . . . like the wind through the trees. And, yes, “did I win their hearts?”

  30. AVGuyDad 4 years ago

    Thank you for this much needed reminder. Once I realized how fast my children were growing up, it reminded me…did I win their hearts? I am all over this!

  31. Lisa 4 years ago

    Thank you for the reminder 🙂 I love this!
    P.S. # 59 Has a spelling error!

    • MJAdmin 4 years ago

      You’re welcome and, thanks for catching that!

      • Kin 3 years ago

        #21 too (your(‘re).
        Great list I especially loved the recent article it linked from. I’ve been very encouraged by the 31 blog your wife contributes to. Thanks to you both for your encouragement to the young families, like ours, in the trenches of littles and learning.
        (Ps my phone is being silly and won’t let me use Capitol letters :-/)

  32. Jolene 4 years ago

    I am pinning this because it is a very important reminder. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    • MJAdmin 4 years ago

      Thanks for that, Jolene!

  33. Lorraine Banks 4 years ago

    I tell my son every night that “you are my light, my love, my inspiration, all my dreams come true”. “you are my answered prayer”.” my gift from God and I love you.” It’s our bedtime routine been saying since he was born, he is now 11 .

  34. Theunis Annandale 4 years ago

    Great list Matthew, got a few good tips, thank you. We as parents sometimes forget the importance we have in the developing lives/minds/hearts of our children and we need to realize that they pay attention to what we say and do. A positive words spoken into the lives of our children can reap great benefits and help them to flourish in so many ways. Obviously on the down side even one negative word can be catastrophic and more damaging than we can imagine. God blessed us with our children and trusts us to nurture and teach them and we have to give it our all because time runs out so quickly and that chance to make a difference could slip through your fingers. Thank you again for this list, I am going to keep this in view so that every phrase can be burned into my memory. Be Blessed Matthew 🙂

  35. Dawn 4 years ago

    I love the look on their faces when a simple sentence brightens them up. They love the encouragement. Thanks for the ideas!

  36. Lisa Jacobson 4 years ago

    Love this list! And I love the way you speak encouraging words into our children’s lives.

  37. Andrea 4 years ago

    Wonderful list, wonderful message!

    • MJAdmin 4 years ago

      Thanks for your kinds words, Andrea.

  38. Shonda 4 years ago

    Thank you, Matthew! I know that as a parent I “should” be naturally saying all of these things, but I need to be reminded and getting ideas just helps me to stay focused on giving my kids words of life!!

    • MJAdmin 4 years ago

      You and me, both, Shonda. God bless you!

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