School is out but it doesn’t mean learning is over! Thanks to our relationship with the Role Mommy Network we were sent the Tool Kits for Kids to learn emotional life skills. Because of the age of my children, we received the Elementary Kit (Ages 5- 11) and the Middle School (Ages 12-14) kit to try out.
Each tool kit, or emotional first aid kit, has 20 step by step strategies which are held in something similar to a CD case. They are designed to target a specific concern such as building self esteem or reducing worry. These are targeted to all children to reduce anxiety and increase their confidence.
My oldest daughter is going to enter middle school next year. Yep, I’m as shocked as you! So these arrived at a perfect time for her as she will be going through pre-teen emotions as well as the realities of middle school.
After reading some of the cards, I think they were just as helpful to me with tips such as the Instant Messages for Your Brain: “I can choose what to think, I choose not to worry” or “I don’t like it but I can deal with it”.
I really think **I** need to keep these handy at my desk at work! Especially when I have to deal with difficult people!
I think they are really going to help her with all the complexities of middle school and beyond and are easy to comprehend but not juvenile either!
The kits between the two age groups contain different content and art. It is cool because the back of each card in the Elementary edition has info “For Parents”. Whereas, the Middle School edition has “Here’s Why It Works” as part of the tool
Now my 8 year old son had a horrible 2nd grade experience. He loved school up until this year. Absolutely loved it and we also had positive feedback from his previous teachers. He is orney, I will admit. He is also very smart. I’m not just saying that because I’m his mother, his standardized tests showed he was above average in all areas.
First nine weeks, when his grades were suffering and he was not wanting to go to school this year, I had to ask myself why? I didn’t really believe his stories that his teacher was mean or picked on him at first or he was afraid to ask questions when not understanding something.
Until, I had the opportunity to have (8) one hour religious education classes with and I witnessed the harsh tone and negativity especially to my child. Actually, really focused on my child even though others were doing similar things. Though, she will claim she has no bias towards him and she is a positive person. I think she thinks she is but it is not how body language and tone are portrayed to the general public.
I won’t dwell on it too much in this post (it really deserves it own post). I know I’m not the only one who has had a negative experience with this particular teacher. Our first hint should have been the numerous people who said their child would never go to that school because of this one teacher. Now I get to be one of those parents. Lovely.
It really pains me to say all of this because there are so many positives things about this school but none of them apply to the second grade class!
I think incidents like this can have devastating effects on a child: Your child brings up all their grades to A’s and B’s from the previous grading period and works his cute little heiny off to accomplish that only to find out his teacher gives him an “C” in effort/conduct. Great way to slam a kid back down who is trying.
All of the effort and hard work paid off with the grades but is still kept off the honor roll because of a subjective grade. Personally, I think if you raise all your grades, your effort and conduct can’t be that bad because those two qualities affect your performance. So at that point, I think he just felt it was useless to even try and gave up caring. Which is not my kid as he is very competitive and wants to do a good job.
What I’m getting at here, is I hope this doesn’t ruin him for 3rd grade. He will be going to a different school and I’m confident he will have a much more positive and upbeat teacher who will make learning fun and not scary.
He will be using this tool kit to help him re-gain his confidence, which is something he has never had a problem with before this year.
With this tool kit, he can learn to feel good about himself, discover what makes him SPECIAL, learn from mistakes, help others, and know how to say GOOD FOR ME!
While these could have been in a book or in flash card format, in CD like appearance and in a CD type case really makes it more fun and a little different than regular flash cards.
Each kit costs $39.95 and are really geared towards each age group without being over simplistic or with concepts too hard to grasp. Obviously, only time will tell how well these work out in the long term.