Saturday, October 17, 2009

Red Ink and Self-Esteem

The above bumper-sticker art was inspired by a story in this month’s VanDamme Academy Newsletter entitled, Building Good Spelling Skills (it can be found on the last page).

The brief article describes how giving a child the opportunity to correct his mistakes helps him build better skills, but it also mentions the importance of not overwhelming him or distracting him from the task at hand. The first helps the student develop proper self-esteem; the second can be detrimental to it.

As a home schooling mother, I am constantly searching for that critical divide. Finding it is not a skill that comes easily to me, but one at which I must become better. I am confident that it is a goal worth pursuing and a skill I have the ability to improve upon.


Amy said...

LB, do you think, given that one has the proper premise to begin with as you describe here, that one can do anything to build this kind of teaching skill before starting to actually teach? I worry about not having good specific teaching skills like this for when I start to homeschool, but is that like expecting to know how to parent before you have kids? Is there any way to prepare?

Lynne said...

That's a great question, Amy. I know only from my experience that I was good at it with one child and am so far horrible at it with the other. This means that even though I started out knowing I needed to give each the opportunities to learn for herself, one took the opportunities and made the most of them, the other - not so much.

Instead of preparation, the practice of helping my youngest child develop self-esteem seems to consist of reminding myself, every 5 minutes when necessary, what I am trying to accomplish by homeschooling her: having her learn facts and how to think, and know that she is capable of both.

Some days are better than others.