When I grew up, public schools used to classify students into the “smart” students, the “talented” students, the “gifted” students, the “not-so-smart” students, the “special” students; sound familiar? But where did that leave me (or you) who wasn’t smart, who wasn’t talented, or who wasn’t gifted…(or so I thought)? It left me feeling bad about myself. It left me feeling that I was not good enough. It left me doubting my abilities. It left me with low self-esteem. It left me not realizing my strengths, but ONLY my weaknesses!
Is that the message we want to send our children today? Is that what we want our children to learn and feel? If not, then why do some schools and/or adults label children? If there are no labels in school, do our friends and family label our children?
Every child is capable of learning! Every child is capable of succeeding! Every child can be intelligent! Every child needs to feel the love and support of loved ones to make sure they know how special they are and truly know their strengths, not just their weaknesses. If a child focuses on their weaknesses, or the labels of themselves, or their feelings of self-doubt, then they will not learn and they most certainly will not know their strengths. They will concentrate on what they are not good at or the things about themselves they have doubts about rather than the other way around.
Let’s not label our kids. Lets just give them the ability to know their strengths and weaknesses, but know and understand they are special and that no one is perfect. It is this perfection that can really hurt a child’s self-esteem. They can achieve success and be “smart” in specific areas. We are not all intelligent in every content area and we are not all successful in everything we do in life. Children need to realize this and need to realize all that makes them who they are as a person. Parents your love, support, and guidance will help them through this journey. Every child is smart and capable!