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Do you believe?

Posted by Patience on September 2, 2008 at 12:14 AM in Patience
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jackie school.jpg

On the eve of my second born heading off to his first day of kindergarten I found myself watching this video over and over again. The video is of a recent speech given at a Dallas Teacher's Conference. The keynote speaker was Dalton Sherman, a local fifth grader who might as well be the next Barack Obama.

The biggest reason I find it so compelling is due to the sheer power and intention in this kid. I began to wonder how he came to this place. Was it just in him? Or was it really what he proposed, that those around him believe in him?

I decided that I agree with Dalton. While every child will not give a speech like his, each child holds something inside that is incredibly unique and makes a mark on this world. This can only grow with adults believing deeply and holding the space for children to discover it for themselves.

It all translates so differently into everyday life and parenting such different individuals. I get so caught up in managing my kids or the busyness of life that I think in little ways I forget to believe in them.

Do we believe that a toddler really can do it himself when he insists?
Do we believe the preschooler can offer suggestions for conflict resolution?
Do we believe our school age kid can really handle disappointment?

At the end of my video surfing I inexplicably felt like I needed a dose of the old tried and true, the biggest advocate and keeper of the idea that children should be loved and valued, Mr. Rogers. His simple truth and consistent message that we are all capable and special reminded me that we have to believe and then just do it. Believe in our kids and give them lots of opportunities to try.

Get your dose of the neighborhood wisdom here.

Comment conversation: What about your child do you believe in today? What superpower is uniquely his or hers?


patience writes...

I believe in Jack's tender and very genuine spirit.
I believe in his ability to blissfully enter and participate in experiences in a rich way.
I believe in Jack's superpower to love deeply and his sage wisdom.

Liz K writes...

Patience, I needed this posting desperately today. I spent the night worrying about my new first-grader Annie. So today:

I believe in Annie's resilience and inherent likeability.
I believe Annie will find her place in her own time.

Naomi writes...

I believe in my little 5 year old's ability to problem solve.

I believe in my 8th grader's ability to lead fearlessly and without hesitation.

I believe in my 2 year old's ability to love without boundaries or limitations.

synge writes...

what an amazing boy and what a beautiful hopeful message. i'm in love with that spirit! also, my baby totally digs mr. rogers. who knew?

matt writes...

y is it alwas about the moms what about the daddys im a single dad and alwas looking for things to do with my 4 year old little girl i love to do things hith her all the time and thanks to me she is one of the smartest kids in her class so see its not just moms some dads play a big role to so thanks

Marci writes...

Matt, I agree that a father's influence on the healthy development of a child is just as important as a mother's. In fact, it is critical in many ways, especially if you are the single parent of a girl. Your relationship with her will have lifelong effects on her self-esteem, confidence, and choices in life. A positive, supportive, and nurturing father-daughter relationship is one of the greatest advantages you can give is truly priceless.
Activity Resources: Library, Park/Rec Ctr, Zoo, Kids Museum, Arts/Crafts/Music, Sports, Puzzles/Games, Nature Trails, Legos/Building Toys, anything you both love doing...

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