Build Confidence In Your Kids


“ Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous

light, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.” Cummings


When I was in college, I spent a summer working as a camp counselor at a

camp just outside of Detroit Michigan. I had the pleasure of taking groups of

kids that normally would not venture outside the parameters of the inner city

on hikes through acres and acres of forest where the thick humidity of the

summer air was almost as difficult to manage as the swarming mosquitoes.

It’s probably no surprise that many of these hikes were spent with lots of

complaining along with the kids questioning their ability to complete the daily

hike.


With one particular group I noticed that one girl started complaining

before she even laced up her shoes to go on the trail. I pulled the kids

together and I told them that I was going to choose someone from the group

that I knew could be a good leader and that had determination and spirit and

could withstand hard times. I chose the girl that had already preemptively started complaining as a challenge to see if she would step up and live up to these characteristics. Sure enough when we got on the trail mid day the heat was brutal,

mosquitoes were out for blood, and I heard campers that were struggling right

off the bat. However the girl that I chose to be a leader took on full

responsibility of a leader with the characteristics that I said. When other girls

in the group started to complain she was encouraging and lead the group with

a sense of power.


The point of the story is that sometimes we have to speak truth into our

kids. And sometimes it’s a stretch to speak positive things about our kids. But

even if we just say the things that we want them to be and tell

them the potential we see in them, that’s all they need to identify with those

characteristics.


Just as my camper didn’t think that she could complete the hike and was

complaining about the truck, as soon as I called out things that I saw in her or

that perhaps that she could be, she gladly stepped into that role and played the

part well.


So where does this fit in with homeschooling? Well of course we are not

just teaching academics but rather the whole character. Because we

homeschool we get to play a big influence on how kids identify and view

themselves. Their idea of who they are is ever-changing by what they think

they can and cannot do, how they do things, what they like, and the list goes

on. Since we get to spend so much time with them, we can recognize

all the good qualities they have. Maybe it is leadership, maybe it’s great math

skills, maybe it’s their empathy they have for people.


I highly recommend that you also have mentors set up in their life were

they're meeting with them on a consistent basis. These people, whether aunts

uncles or neighbors or family friends can speak truth and life into your kids and confidence and character will blossom from these relationships.

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