These days children are in a highly competitive environment from the minute they start school – and that’s about to get worse!

The Education Department may argue it’s the best way for teachers to assess where each child is

and what each child needs but have you ever stopped to think how your child feels? In any test, most children will come up against something they don’t know or something they get wrong. What does that tell them at this early and crucial stage of their education?

It tells them they’re not good enough. Some children will be motivated to learn more and do better but most children will start the downward spiral of feeling a failure.

Think about your own life. When you get a bit of success at something I bet you feel like doing more of it. The dialogue in your head goes something like this, ”That was ok. It feels good to be able to do that. I’ll have a go at something that’s a bit more of a stretch.”

On the other hand if you’re asked to do something and you struggle and don’t feel you’ve done a good job you feel a bit low. You may try to avoid something similar in the future. The dialogue in your head goes something like, “ That was hard. I’m feeling a bit meh now. I think I’ll try to avoid that next time or do something easier.”

At Calm Caterpillars Relaxation classes we do activities that change the “not good enough” dialogue into a “I can” dialogue.

Have a look at the picture at the top of this blog. The children in my Thursday class wrote these themselves. There are a few siblings and they all told me what their brother or sister was great at. There are often things we’re great at but we just think they’re ordinary.

We finished off the activity by looking in the mirror and saying “I’m great”. There’s nothing big-headed about this. Feeling great is completely different to showing off.

Each week we have a different positive affirmation. This means the children build up a bank of vocabulary they can use.

Try doing this activity with your child and see how many things they think they’re great at. Let me know!

You can book a place at Calm Caterpillars Relaxation classes here.