"Good morning Bumblebee"
By Jo Irwin - Mini Maestros Macedon Ranges Franchisee
These three words are sung, spoken, whispered, yelled or hummed across Australia, Singapore, Malaysia and China every week by over 8,000 children and adults.
Never before have three words created so much excitement, joy and anticipation. This phrase heralds the beginning of a Mini Maestros class. 40 minutes of pure fun, shared with children, parents, grandparents, carers and friends. Something happens after this ritual is complete. It might take a few weeks, a term or even almost a year, but something special definitely happens.
Take for instance the child who comes to class who gives anything a go and doesn’t hesitate to get involved. They want to be the first to do everything and they love an audience. They don’t want to wait their turn or listen to anyone else because they have things to do and people to show it to. However over the course of their time with Mini Maestros they begin to listen and wait and consider others within the group. They realise they will get a turn and have their moment to shine.
Another child comes to class who is reluctant to give anything a go and is reluctant to participate in any activities. They don’t hesitate to hide and feign muteness in order not to get involved. They would be happy if the other child who can do everything continues to show their skills and they get the morning off. However again over the course of their time being nurtured in their Mini Maestros class, they realise that they can have a go and succeed. They feel a sense of accomplishment to see the encouragement and respect they receive from the rest of the class. Eventually whispering those three magic words brings tears to everyone in the room along with a sense of excitement and reward from their teacher. How CONFIDENT they have become.
Confident to say or sing their name, confident to choose an action independently, confident to ask for the pink ribbon, confident to play their instruments loud… or soft, confident to dance unassisted, hold hands with a partner, wait their turn, listen to their friends, share their puppet, stay under the parachute, let go of the frog, point to the steady beat, find the page in their workbook. Confident to be themselves; to learn to love learning.
Building confidence in children helps them feel self-assured. It helps children feel they are able to have a go and to be persistent. It teaches them that things don’t always work the first time, that sometimes if you keep trying, you can do it. Finding the resilience to overcome things that scare them or make them feel unsteady is part of the learning process. Confidence builds when children are exposed to these feelings and are allowed to experience moments of accomplishment AND moments of failure as a result of having a go.
There are three other words that you can teach your children to build confidence too. Three words that everyone needs to hear every day. I love you. Nothing builds confidence more than knowing you are loved. Hug a kid, sing them three words and watch them have a go.
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