Empowering Our Children: The Importance of Learning Assertion

by | May 1, 2024 | Education

Hello, parents and caregivers! At Bristol Tutors, we believe that education goes beyond the classroom. While academic excellence is undoubtedly important, we also recognise the significance of equipping our children with essential life skills that will serve them well throughout their lives. One such skill that often gets overlooked is assertion – the ability to confidently express oneself while respecting the thoughts and feelings of others. In today’s blog post, we’ll explore why assertion is crucial for our children’s development and provide practical suggestions on how parents can help their kids learn this valuable skill.



Why is Assertion Important?

Assertion is more than just speaking up; it’s about finding the balance between assertiveness and empathy. In a world where communication is key, teaching our children to assert themselves respectfully can make a world of difference in their personal and professional lives.


Four key reasons why assertion is important:


  1. Builds Confidence: When children learn to assert themselves, they develop confidence in their abilities and opinions. This confidence extends beyond verbal communication to their actions and decision-making to impact almost every area of their life.
  2. Fosters Healthy Relationships: Assertion is essential for establishing and maintaining healthy relationships. By expressing their thoughts and feelings assertively, children can communicate their needs effectively while also respecting the boundaries of others.  This is a skill that can be taught early and can help with school ground tensions so it is well worth investing in schooling your child in this key skill.
  3. Empowers Against Bullying: Assertion is a powerful tool in combating bullying. Assertive children are more likely to stand up for themselves and others, reducing the likelihood of becoming targets of bullying.
  4. Prepares for Adulthood: As our children grow into adults, they’ll encounter various situations where assertion is necessary – from negotiating job offers to navigating conflicts in relationships. By learning assertion early on, children are better prepared to handle these challenges with confidence and grace.



Practical Suggestions for Parents

This might all sound very sensible but how can you practically help your child?  Well, now that we understand the importance of assertion, let’s explore some practical ways parents can help their children learn this valuable skill:


  1. Encourage Open Communication: Create a safe and supportive environment where your child feels comfortable expressing their thoughts and feelings. Encourage open communication by actively listening to what they have to say without judgement or interruption.
  2. Model Assertive Behaviour: Children learn by example, so it’s essential to model assertive behaviour in your own interactions. Demonstrate confidence in expressing your thoughts and feelings while also respecting the opinions of others.
  3. Teach Assertive Language: Help your child develop assertive language by providing them with specific phrases they can use in different situations. Encourage the use of “I” statements to express their feelings and needs without blaming or accusing others.
  4. Practice Role-playing: Role-playing can be a fun and effective way to help children practise assertion skills. Create hypothetical scenarios and take turns playing different roles, such as standing up to a bully or negotiating with a friend.  There are lots of resources available to help parents with this, such as worksheets and courses.
  5. Set Boundaries: Teach your child the importance of setting and respecting personal boundaries. Discuss scenarios where it’s appropriate to say “no” and empower them to assertively communicate their boundaries to others.
  6. Celebrate Assertive Behaviour: When you see your child assert themselves respectfully, be sure to praise and celebrate their behaviour. Positive reinforcement will encourage them to continue practising assertion in the future.
  7. Seek Professional Support if Needed: If your child struggles with assertion or experiences bullying, don’t hesitate to seek support from a qualified professional, such as a school counsellor or therapist. They can provide additional guidance and resources to help your child develop assertiveness skills.




As parents or caregivers, it’s our responsibility to empower our children with the tools they need to succeed in life. By teaching them assertion, we give them the confidence and resilience to navigate life’s challenges with grace and integrity. Remember, assertion is not about being aggressive or confrontational – it’s about finding the courage to speak up for oneself while also respecting the thoughts and feelings of others.

At Bristol Tutors, we’re committed to supporting parents in nurturing the holistic development of their children. Have a look at our partner website, Greenhouse Learning, to see how we can support you with mentoring opportunities to build on these life skills needed in addition to academic knowledge. Or you can contact us here

About Bristol Tutors

We have been a trusted local provider of tutoring in the Bristol area for over 10 years. If you’d like to understand more about how we could help you, please get in touch.