Many parents are finding this time to be a challenge for them and for their children as we all work to ensure learning and social-emotional health during this tumultuous time.
How can we find joy?
A formal learning celebration at home can be an impactful, bonding experience between you and your child. Take a break from the usual homework help and spelling reviews and take some time to celebrate your child’s development alongside them!
Here are a few ways you can host an at-home celebration that leaves you, your children, and your whole family feeling calm, connected, and ready to take on the challenges of the year.
Step 1: Have your child complete a reflection (form below) through writing, drawing, or speaking out loud. Ask them what they notice about their own learning throughout the year and where they feel they’ve made progress. Even and especially for young children, you’ll be surprised what they’ll notice about themselves when asked!
Step 2: Tell your child what you see them doing really well, and have them repeat after you to take in the compliment (taking in a compliment is something we can all work on). This can sound like “I notice that you are taking time to sound out your words and you don’t get frustrated when it’s hard at first.” Then, your child can say “I take time to sound out words and don’t get frustrated when it’s hard.”
Step 3: Give them a certificate or some memento of their learning. This visual reminder can hang on their bedroom wall or near their Zoom school desk, and can be a great source of encouragement when things inevitable get tricky again.
Step 4: Have a dance, art, or jumping party! Find some way to move your body. End this celebration a little out of breath with smiles on your face.
However you choose to celebrate, make sure your child knows what they’ve done well and has repeated compliments you’ve given them. After all, our outer voice becomes your child’s inner voice.