The Endless Paths of Empowerment for Tamariki
In our world today, we are all searching for what empowers us to be our best selves.
As adults we can be the driving forces of discovering what empowers us to do our best, try or give our best, which can then filter onto our tamariki. Hear Terrace Views Kaiako Shay’s kōrero on this!
I am passionate about finding strategies to empower our tamariki to develop the belief that they can do anything, give everything a go and give their best while feeling comfortable and confident to do so. Based on my working experience here in the Ngahiraka learning space at Terrace Views, I have come to learn that their best is determined by them and against their individual measure. Whether it be their best jump, their best drawing, their best dance, their best piece of art or trying something new at mat time – we are enhancing an environment where tamariki should feel a sense of proudness in their efforts but also pushed to go a little further.
Viewing the learning of tamariki from an empowering lens then leads to tamariki recognising they are heard, felt and seen. This is where the magic happens! We are finding that empowerment is felt strongly through consistent verbal communication and hearing positive affirmations that overrides the little voices that may be playing inside the mind. Through enhancing empowerment we are able to strengthen connections with others, learn that we are understood and that we always have that support to fall back on. This then cycles on to tamariki being able to share this feeling up and out, giving empowering communication to others which I believe then filters into virtues like respect, confidence, mindfulness and helpfulness.
Things you could try as your kainga (home):
- Leading conversations with your tamariki with “What was one thing that made you proud today?” “What was something you felt empowered to do?“ “Who empowered you today?” Questions like these really provokes their thinking around the virtues you would love them to grow up understanding and displaying.
- Challenge yourself to lead a challenging time (aka tantrum) with an empowering statement. Example: I loved the way you chose your clothes today, you look beautiful. Could you help to choose something for me? Redirecting challenging moments into involvement with decision making, fairness and choice.
- Be mindful of children’s thoughts and voice. Strive to listen to understand and use communication to reason. This nurtures the safety of feeling seen, heard and felt.
- Leading with positive statements or affirmations to support tamariki to repeat it back to themselves and have it become normalized thinking. For example: “I am confident” “I can do hard things” “It’s okay to try again” “I love my efforts and mahi”
I would love to hear if you have adopted any of these tips for either your tamariki or even yourself!
Ngā mihi nui – Kaiako Shay