Superheroes. Every child wants to be a Superhero. Ask a child, “What does a Superhero do?” and you will hear everything from “save the day” to “help people” to “get the bad guys.” These are good things, and Superheros are icons of goodness.
In a child’s eyes, that means doing the right thing.
The problem is, their whole life–all four years–has stressed “Do the right thing!” A constant reminder of what to do, and what not to do, can often make children feel frustrated. Even worse, feelings of not measuring up creep in.
I assume, right off the bat, that a child is filled with goodness. And much more:
The check list goes on and on.
Whether or not these are true, a child lives up to our expectations. Knowing that a teacher thinks they measure up with all the “right stuff” is nothing short of a golden key, a free pass, and a warm blanket.
And that is the start of teaching a child to become a Superhero.
Positive affirmations slowly become part of everyday, like grains of sand collecting to make a sandcastle. Then, the hard work begins– teaching children to overcome obstacles. Resiliency and Persistence. I become the cheerleader along the way. “You can’t…yet. But you can if you keep trying.”
“Yet” is a powerful word.
Remember The Little Engine That Could? I think I can…I know I can…I can.
Now, children feel empowered. Powerful. They naturally want to spread their wings, or capes, and do good things. Once their bucket is filled, they become bucket fillers, or Superheroes.
And what about the child who is angry or mean? That is merely a layer of mud over gold. Children aren’t born that way. They’re golden at birth. I just have to wash off the mud. I know that they’re already filled with goodness. Remember that checklist? That makes it easy to wash away the anger. I’m a champion of good, and so are children at heart.
We wrote picture stories about being Superheroes. In doing so, it validated each child’s accomplishments. Children decorated their stories and wore capes for a photo.
From the oldest:
To the youngest:
We are all Superheroes!