More on Self-Esteem
I11 and K9, for whatever reason, seem immune to the self-esteem boosters they're getting in school (or, in I11's case, were getting - it doesn't look like his school offers a whole lot of self-esteem boosters - from what I can see, they are strictly merit-based, which I am very happy about).
K9 has, once again, taught us a valuable lesson yesterday. He's been playing basketball for a few weeks now. It is a "fun league" and K9 has never played before, so I confess he hasn't been doing so well this far. It doesn't help that, when he's out on the field, he has this incredibly kind, meek look on his face. He's a nice guy and he can't help it. Anyway, nobody ever said a word to K9 about how he was doing, and the coaches, of course, always were, "guys, you're all doing great". But, for some reason, K9 wasn't all that excited about playing on that league. Each time he had to go to the practice or to the game, I had to remind him that his friends were on the team and he could not let them down by not showing.
All that changed yesterday. K9 reluctantly went to his practice and came back happy as a clam in seaweed, telling me, "I had so much fun at the practice today!" You know what changed? During the practice, he learned how to make hoops, and made quite a few. His work has finally paid off, and that felt better than a hundred "Superb Work!" stickers. When you try and try to do something and then finally do it well - now that is a real self-esteem booster. As for the stickers and the stars? Sorry, but my kids see right through it, and so probably do yours.