Unlock pupils' self-esteem

1st November 2002 at 00:00
IN his article "Poor children poor results" (TES, October 11), Nicholas Pyke describes how politicians and advisers are scratching their heads about children who seem unable or unwilling to move beyond level 3. I would recommend that they consider the fact that self-esteem goes into the parts which literacy and numeracy cannot reach.

Neglecting how children feel about themselves will always lead to frustration when trying to improve achievement. Understanding the importance of pupil self-esteem is crucial to success.

Certainly, poor family backgrounds are linked to the problem. I spent most of my teaching career in schools where the family background of many pupils left much to be desired. As head of a school which had a highly competent, enthusiastic staff offering an exciting approach to the curriculum but having little impact on good results, I introduced a new activity aimed at helping pupils understand their emotions and raise their self-esteem. The outcome was more positive attitudes and better relationships which transformed the ethos of the school.

Using circle time to educate the emotions and helping to build healthy levels of self-esteem has a very rewarding impact on the academic achievements of pupils.

It has been said that parents hold the key to their children's self-esteem - but teachers hold the spare.

Murray White

International Council for Self-Esteem

5 Ferry Path, Cambridge.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now