Randy Thomas is blogging for me today. I’m sure he’ll inspire us and give us much to think about. I’m grateful for his friendship and role on staff as the Celebrate Kids’ Online & Social Media content manager.I am honored to be blogging here today! Lately, I have been reading No More Perfect Kids by Dr. Kathy Koch and Jill Savage. The story below tumbled out and onto the screen after reading the first chapter of their excellent book. I hope you will see the value of how a teacher can embrace an imperfect student, help affirm their innate gifts, and set them on a positive course. Mrs. Pierson has always been a personal hero of mine. I am sure you will see why.
Mrs. Pierson had this completely ’80′s longish bob hairdo thing going on. This was of course completely appropriate because the scene I am going to describe happened in 1984. She also dressed like a college professor (in my mind) even though she was my 9th grade civics teacher. I wouldn’t say she was overly gregarious, but she always seemed super-smart, confident, and calm. For many reasons, I loved her and that class. In all of my school years, civics was one of the very few classes I felt eager to attend. I never hesitated to raise my hand and answer the questions she would ask.
I loved the subject and I loved seeing her eyes light up in recognition of my eagerness.
Even when Tip, the kid in front of me, would blow spit bubbles randomly in the air, I was always focussed and enjoyed that class. Tip was cool too.
I sure hope you’re looking forward to purchasing, reading, and learning from my new book, No More Perfect Kids, that I was privileged to write with the brilliant Jill Savage of Hearts At Home. Here’s another excerpt you’ll benefit from. (Last Wednesday, I posted an important section of ten ways to encourage children. Check it out, too!)
Why Do Kids Make Mistakes?
An excerpt from No More Perfect Kids by Jill Savage and Dr. Kathy Koch
Does it ever feel like your child does more wrong than they do right? As a parent, we know our kids aren’t failures. They can fail a quiz here and there, not win a tournament, and not earn a raise during their first job review, but none of that makes them failures.
They will make mistakes, though, because they’re human! To best help our kids overcome their mistakes and not feel like failures, we need to understand why they make mistakes. When a parent understands, it increases their compassion and decreases their frustration. As you listen closely and observe intently for the “why” behind their mistakes, you can know how to best support them. Let’s explore eight reasons kids make mistakes.
Dr. Kathy points out the differences between criticism and correction, encouraging you to only use correction. In fact, she doesn’t think there’s any such thing as constructive criticism and you’ll agree after listening. You’ll also see why specific vs. general corrections can motivate and help children make changes you desire. Lastly, learn how she recommends you handle correcting children when it’s not an urgent situation. There’s much here to benefit you and your children!
I’m so excited to announce that the No More Perfect Kids book is now here!
Jill Savage and I worked hard over the past year to bring you this powerful book.
However, they say good things come to those who wait. This saying is especially true where No More Perfect Kids is concerned. The official release date was March 1, BUT if you are willing to wait to get your copy between March 13 – 23, you will be eligible to receive over $100 in free resources! I’ll provide all the info you need during release week to get the book and the bonus offers so stay tuned for the details.
You’ll also want to pop over to www.nomoreperfect.com where you can sign up to receive weekly antidotes to the perfection infection on the No More Perfect Blog, or learn how to better love your kids for who they are through our free 13-day No More Perfect Kids e-challenge.
While you’re waiting for those bonus offers, here’s an excerpt from the book. It will help you understand how very practical and helpful we think the book will be for you.
I noticed the black pickup truck behind me in line. It was more gray than black and I was pretty sure that’s why the driver pulled into line.
My gold car had a strong beige look to it which is why I was in line. We had both decided to use the automatic carwash.
The next time I looked in my rearview mirror, I noticed the young girl. Her dad had allowed her to unbuckle her seatbelt and she was now standing next to him on the seat.
Even though my back window was filthy and his front window was dirty, her smile shined through. It was huge. She was bouncing with excitement.
Maybe this little girl has been through the carwash before. Maybe it was her first time. She knew it would be unique. Fun. Different. Exciting. Strange.
Compliments are powerful tools that can motivate and help children (and others!) when we use them well. Because Dr. Kathy’s instruction is extremely practical and our compliments can help kids repeat what we want them to, this may be one of the more important videos we’ve produced. Make her recommended change and kids will want to find out what you think about how they’re doing. Imagine!
He walked the neighborhood observing. He watched the people. He looked around their homes. He tried to notice everything. He took notes on his pad of paper like the guest instructor had taught him.
- Windows … check.
- Fences … check.
- Shrubs … check.
- Cars in the driveway and on the street … check.
This eighth grader wanted a summer job. As he had been taught in a special seminar, he’d have to see a need and convince people he could meet it. He was too young to be hired in the traditional sense, but he wanted to do something meaningful.
Do you know children, teens, and maybe young adults who have an unrealistic goal or expectation for perfection?
- They may resent practice and studying because they think things should come easier to them.
- They may get angry and depressed when making mistakes because they don’t think perfect people make them.
- They may not try new things because they can’t risk their identity of “I am perfect.”
Concerned? Of course, because you want your children to try new things, handle mistakes with more grace, and study and practice to achieve excellence.
As I wrote about last Wednesday, the television coverage of the Olympics provided many opportunities to discuss our multiple intelligences. They also were ripe for discussing your kids’ expectations and attitudes toward their mistakes. Did you take advantage of those opportunities?
Kathyism #58 – “T.A.R.G.E.T.”: In today’s video, I take a few minutes to briefly summarize the last six videos where I presented things we can change so motivation increases. I spelled out an acronym that can help us remember what to think about when our children and students demonstrate apathy rather than the motivation and energy we hope to see. Changing these six things can increase our motivation, too, and they influence our SCORE and our kids’ SCORE. If you don’t know what that is, watch the video. It’s just 3½ minutes long.
If you’ve watched any of the Olympics, you’ve seen some of the best examples of being smart with body smart that exist. Have you also noticed the athletes’ use of their self-smart and people-smart abilities? How are picture-smart strengths relevant? Are there any smarts you haven’t noticed? Music? Nature? Logic? Word?
I hope you’ve used the television coverage to help your children understand the smarts and how their use can add to our experiences and joy. This is an ideal time to reinforce the idea that our intelligences never work alone; they always work together with others. Rich discussions are so possible! Maybe these questions and ideas will help.
How do the speed skaters and skiers use their body-smart abilities to not fall over when it appears they’re skating and skiing almost parallel to the ground? Do you think they’re all nature smart? Why or why not?