How to Build Self Esteem in Children

Happy Girl

Self esteem leads to happiness

Self esteem is a term used by psychologists that relates to the value we place on ourselves. Kids with high self esteem think well of themselves, while children with low self esteem generally have negative thought patterns and beliefs about themselves. Low self esteem is also linked to high stress and poor concentration levels in children.

Positive self esteem is needed for children to develop into happy, balanced adults. So how can teachers and parents help children with these types of problems?

1.Positive self talk- deliberately get children to change the way that they speak about themselves. Change “I can’t do it” to “I can do it”, “I’m dumb” to   “I am smart, this is easy”. It important to stay with them until they accomplish the task they are struggling with to show them that they CAN do it.
2.Supported learning- If a child with self esteem issues  is having difficulty with a task, help them by asking lots of questions about the task until they have enough information (that they have supplied) to complete the task. Demonstrate how to apply the knowledge if appropriate and withdraw support gradually as they become more confident with the task. Make sure you point out that all of the information needed to solve the task came from THEM- this is sure to bring a smile to their face!
3.Positive affirmation– Use a Rainbow Affirmation from our “Clam Classrooms Resource Book”. These affirmations can be used for whole class or individual purposes, popped on the whiteboard and used quickly throughout the day and even used for focus meditations.
4.Praise- genuine praise is a great way to reach these kids and point out the things that they are good at.
5.Posture- Remind them to stand tall and walk proud. Our body language really affects the way we feel each day!
6.Smile- Remind them to smile, it really does make you feel happy!
7.Visualise- Use a  Rainbow Crystal Connection CD like “The Self Tree” from Rainbow Calm Middle School CD or “I Am Sleepy” from Rainbow Sleep Tight.

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