These days of remote learning are for the birds? Am I right? Some days are hard, other days are harder, but in between those days are some good days that I try to hold onto to energize me for the next.
My oldest is seven years old and in second grade. He is currently learning remotely five days a week. We’re a few weeks in and I can definitely say that it’s been a ride. If I’m being honest, it’s probably been harder on this mama’s heart than it has on him. He’s pretty independent and he’s handled all the changes in stride.
But, even on our best days, there’s always hiccups. Whether it’s a little brother who rambles into the study room or a dog barking at the mailman, there’s no shortage of noise or random act of chaos. Unfortunately, that is the tipping point for A. As expected, he doesn’t do well with interruptions. And it takes him a bit to settle back into his virtual classroom.
That, coupled with the up and down roller coaster of emotions that is remote learning? Well, sometimes, some days are BIG emotional days.
Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, listen to this mom of three boys when I say that little boys have BIG emotions, too. All three of our kids have big, sensitive personalities. I love it and cherish it. And nurturing their emotional health is at the top of this boy mama’s head most days of the week.
Our hardest few days was last week during testing days. A, my Type-A, first child personality did not do well with not knowing the hard questions. We had lots of big talks about how to process our emotions. How to navigate feeling confident in what we know today and being excited about the new things he’s going to learn this year.
Like many of you with school-aged kids, navigating this new normal of virtual school and my growing kids’ personalities is a whole new level of unknown. I’ve been soaking up all of the resources available with the Dove Self-Esteem Project. There is so much information everywhere, that sometimes it’s a lot to digest. But, the Dove Self-Esteem Project does a great job highlighting various hard topics and ways to help build self-esteem for our kids.
Simple Ways to Build Self-Esteem for Kids
With both of our school-aged kids, we start our school days off by reciting simple phrases to have a positive attitude for the day. “It’s going to be a great day today.” “I’m going to learn something new.” “I’m going to listen to my teacher.” “I’m going to have fun with my friends.” “I am strong, I am smart, I am brave, I am kind.”
Setting the Example
It seems simple, but it’s hard to do in practice. Getting ready for the day helps me start off on a high note. I notice a huge difference in both of our attitudes and confidence levels when we both get ready and go through our normal morning routine. Starting the school/workday feeling our best usually sets us on a path to a good day of remote learning.
Words of Affirmation
Just like me, A soaks up words of affirmation. Verbally encouraging him throughout the school day re-energizes him for the next lesson. I try my best to take breaks from work, when he has a break from school, so that we can catch up and assess how he feels that day.
Letting the Kid(s) Teach You
One of A’s favorite things is to teach his little brothers (or us) a lesson he learned that day in school. It’s a great, simple way for him to recap lessons and feel confident in himself.
Feeling connected to classmates is really hard for A in the virtual setting. As a second grader, it’s not like he’s having full blown online chats with his friends. Regardless, with his deep dive into all things virtual – tools, sites, and apps – I’ve made sure to teach him all about online social etiquette.
From showing simple ways of spreading kindness to being encouraging to a classmate, I think teaching our kids how to navigate the digital world is something that will set them up for success in the future.
Feeling Confident in the Skin You’re In
From our daily dance-offs to outdoor recess time in the backyard, we try our best to stay active. I want my boys to love themselves from the inside out. Even at a young age, he has noticed that he looks different being a mixed-race kid. We’ve learned in the past few years how to encourage him to embrace his differences and to feel confident of his culture and heritage.
What are some things you do to build self-esteem in your home?
Simple Ways to Build Self-Esteem for Kids