“I’m just not smart.”
I recently met a mom who asked – “What do you say when your daughter says –
I’m not smart. I’m not like the other kids. How come I don’t get good grades like they do?” I’m just not smart like they are.’” (Ashley, age 9)
It’s heartbreaking. Especially when you know she’s bright, full of life and bursting
with creative energy. Yet, when she enters the
classroom, much of who she is goes unnoticed, unappreciated and undeveloped.
She might be a visual learner. Visual learners are nonlinear, big picture, creative thinkers that may struggle academically. The way their mind works is contrary to the way schools teach and measure intelligence. But there’s hope. Understanding who your child is and that the problem lies in teaching styles – not them – is the beginning of change. It brings light back into dark places. It brings hope.
So where do you start? Here are some keys to getting your child to a place of confidence and success.
- Validate your child. It’s important as parents that we understand our kids and be their number one supporters, their champions. They see themselves first through the reflection in our eyes and we have a remarkable opportunity to help them believe in themselves and gain confidence in who they are and what they can achieve.
- Tell her who she is. Talk to her about being a visual learner. Help her understand the things she does well and where she may need help. Understanding the way her mind works and naming her strengths and areas of weakness, can bring clarity and eliminate shame.
- Celebrate her strengths. Visual kids are great. They have remarkable minds, unique types of creativity and very bright futures. Remember to see the things she does well and help her see the wonder in who she is.
- Find the tools and techniques and help she needs. There are very specific techniques you can use at home to help your visual child learn to read, understand math, organize their thoughts for writing, and manage time better and so much more. As they develop a better understanding of the way their mind works, they can develop approaches to learning that will lead to life long academic success.
Be encouraged! You know and love your child like no one else and you’re here to protect and shepherd her into maturity. Trust who she’s made to be and be encouraged, as you find ways to get her what she needs to thrive.