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100+ Positive Adjectives to Describe a Child – With Free Printable Poster!

Today I’m sharing a list of 100+ positive adjectives to describe a child with a free printable poster of positive adjectives. I hope you enjoy and find it helpful!

You won’t find phrases like “well behaved” or adjectives like cute, handsome, or intelligent in this list. They’re all unique, positive ways to describe a child’s personality. The free printable poster has a cheerful rainbow background and is perfect for classrooms or home use.

Have you ever noticed that the qualities we claim to value in adults are the same things we try to discourage in children?

We praise children for being quiet, coloring inside the lines, and standing still. Then we say we value innovation, determination, and authenticity.

We also tend to praise children’s appearance constantly but don’t really mention their personalities and actions in positive ways. This list of positive adjectives to call a child will help you change that!

100+ Positive Adjectives to Describe a Child - plus a free printable poster of positive adjectives!

This post may include affiliate links, which means I may make a commission on purchases made through these links at no additional cost to you. 

How to describe a child

Hearing the words people use to describe my child has made me very aware of the adjectives I use to describe her. Their descriptions have made me really stop and think about the messages our word choices unintentionally send our children.

Frequently we use kind of milk-toast adjectives like “great,” focus on physical characteristics (“cute” or “pretty”), or praise a child for being so “smart.”

There are a couple problems with always praising a child’s appearance or constantly calling them “good” or “smart.”

For one, girls are already bombarded with messages from society that their appearance matters, maybe more than anything else about them.

mom and daughter wearing superhero capes

Although no one means harm when they tell their daughter how cute she is or that she has a nice outfit, it helps reinforce the idea that how they look is more important then who they are. This can cause a lot of problems and confidence issues down the line!

Virtually everyone who talks to us when we’re out tells us how pretty, beautiful, or cute our LG is. They tell us how my husband is going to jealously guard her from would-be boyfriends. Muñeca (doll) and princesa are favorite adjectives from our Miami family.

A few people do comment on how observant she is, but typically only after they’ve called her cute half a dozen times.

I know it’s super hard not to call your little one cute all the time. I’ve tried since day 1 to say other things to LG, but “cute” still slips out frequently because she is cute! But I consciously try to mention her other attributes, like her strength and determination, whenever possible.

Constantly praising a child’s intelligence can also backfire. Although it’s obviously fine to mention their smarts in moderation, a child may become afraid of doing anything that might make them look “stupid” if they’ve tied their identity to being “smart.”

This kind of thinking can lead “talented” students to take less challenging classes and tasks because they’ve tied their identity to being a “good student” and are afraid of making less than straight A’s (If you’re a new reader – I have a Masters in Teaching and this is a topic we studied in developmental psychology and educational theory classes. It’s fascinating stuff!)

It’s also really important to read the research on how praise can backfire in the long run. Read Conditional Parenting – it’s a game changer.

Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and...
  • Raising Kids
  • Kohn, Alfie (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

By using more diverse adjectives to describe your child and mentioning their personality traits more than their appearance, you can help your child develop a more healthy and wholistic self-image and greater confidence!

If you have kids at home, make sure to check out this free printable activity pack with low-prep and no-prep educational activities!

How to use this list of positive adjectives

These adjectives are great for introducing new words to your child. Some of them are more advanced than others, which makes them the perfect way to introduce new words.

They’re also useful for expanding your own repertoire of complements and descriptions.

smiling girl hugging mom by school bus

Additionally, you can use these adjectives if your child has a school assignment to come up with a list of words to describe themselves.

Challenge your children to describe themselves and others in new, different ways each day of the week! See if you can all go an entire week without simply describing someone as nice, pretty, or great.

Make sure to grab the free printable poster (at the bottom of the post) with all 100+ positive adjectives so you can post it in your home or classroom for reference! 

Pin this list of positive adjectives now so you don’t lose track of the post!

Looking for something more than cute to describe your child? These 100+ positive adjectives to describe a child can help! There's a free printable poster, too!

100+ positive adjectives to describe a child

  • Adaptable
  • Adventurous
  • Affectionate
  • Alert
  • Ambitious
  • Amiable
  • Astute
  • Attentive
  • Authentic
  • Aware
  • Awesome
  • Bold
  • Brave
  • Calm
  • Capable
  • Caring
  • Compassionate
  • Confident
  • Considerate
  • Consistant
  • Courageous
  • Courteous
  • Curious
  • Decisive
  • Dependable
  • Determined
  • Dexterous
  • Diligent
  • Diplomatic
  • Dynamic
  • Earnest
  • Encouraging
  • Energetic
  • Engaging
  • Enthusiastic
  • Fair
  • Fearless
  • Flexible
  • Focused
  • Forgiving
  • Forthright
  • Free-spirited
  • Friendly
  • Fun
  • Fun-loving
  • Generous
  • Gentle
  • Genuine
  • Giving
  • Graceful
  • Gracious
  • Happy
  • Hardworking
  • Honest
  • Hopeful
  • Humble
  • Humorous
  • Idealistic
  • Imaginative
  • Innovative
  • Insightful
  • Intuitive
  • Inventive
  • Joyful
  • Just
  • Kind
  • Lively
  • Loving
  • Loyal
  • Merry
  • Motivated
  • Motivational
  • Nurturing
  • Observant
  • Open
  • Open-hearted
  • Open-minded
  • Optimistic
  • Organized
  • Outgoing
  • Patient
  • Persistent
  • Playful
  • Positive
  • Precise
  • Punctual
  • Purposeful
  • Quick-witted
  • Radiant
  • Realistic
  • Reflective
  • Reliable
  • Resourceful
  • Sincere
  • Sociable
  • Social
  • Strong
  • Sympathetic
  • Trusting
  • Trustworthy
  • Upbeat
  • Vivacious
  • Warm
  • Welcoming
  • Wise
  • Zany

Free printable poster of positive adjectives

Here’s a preview of the printable poster of positive adjectives! (The image is just a low-res preview, not the printable PDF)

Free printable poster of positive adjectives to call a child

If you’d like to reference this list of positive adjectives to describe a child, make sure to grab the free printable!

Download your printable poster of 100 positive adjectives here

Non Appearance-Based Positive Adjectives to Describe a Child and a free printable poster

This poster of positive adjectives matches a set of the growth mindset poster printables I shared recently. Make sure to download them, too, while you’re in the resource library!

growth mindset poster free printables with rainbow background

More positive parenting resources

You can’t pour from an empty cup. These free self-care ideas for moms can help you be the positive parent you want to be! There are also some free printable affirmation cards to help you out.

Free printable affirmation cards for self-care. Beautiful watercolor affirmation cards for free!

Do you want to encourage your toddler’s desire to practice gross motor skills? These indoor gross motor toys for toddlers are the best!

Gross motor toys for young toddlers who can't stop moving

Do you have any additional positive adjectives you’d like to see added to the list?

100+ positive adjectives to call a child plus a free printable poster of positive adjectives!
{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Didi January 6, 2020, 00:10

    This was Amazing!
    I was inspired, encouraged, and I learnt from the above.
    Wow! I love it.

    • Natasha January 6, 2020, 07:52

      I’m so glad you enjoyed this post about describing children and positive adjectives to describe a child! Thank you for leaving a comment. You put a smile on my face this morning!

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