Monday, August 20, 2012

Off to see the Wizard

Lately I've been thinking a lot about self-esteem.  I've been thinking about getting kids to believe in their value and see the value in others so they treat them with respect and kindness.  You know that thing Aibileen Clark says to Mae Mobeley in The Help - "You is kind, you is smart, you is important."  Each of those traits matches up with a character in The Wizard of Oz - Tin Man, Scarecrow, and Lion.

You is kind - you have a heart to love and you deserve to be loved.  Your heart wants to love other people, it doesn't want to hurt them.

You is smart - you have a brain.  You have thoughts that are your own, and they are valuable and worthy of being shared.  Other people's points of view are valuable and worthy of being considered.

You is important - if you believe that you are important, than you can find the courage to stand up for yourself and make your voice heard.  Other people are important, and you shouldn't put them down anymore than people should put you down.

Each trait then has an icon that matches it - a heart, a light bulb, and a medal.  You can talk to the whole class about these traits and have them displayed somewhere in the room to refer back to.  When a student shows these traits to others, you can give them a little award shaped like that trait.

Maybe it's a little sappy, a little corny, but it's been stuck in my head ever since I saw someone's blog that had a Wizard of Oz theme and featured those three symbols.  I feel awful that I can't remember whose blog it was, but I have looked at a LOT of people's classrooms lately and it's all jumbled together.  If you think you know what blog I might be talking about, let me know so I can link to them. 

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