The Power of Affirmations
Updated: Mar 15
Words are powerful. The right kind of words has the power to build up one's soul. Just think about the last time you received a kind word from someone. That one compliment may have made you feel good about yourself or given you confidence for the day. One simple encouraging comment can change your entire mood from feeling despair to feeling hopeful.
A positive word can inspire your life by instilling the courage to accomplish something marvelous without having much fear of failing. Words do just that. They affect your emotions, change how you feel about yourself, and give you the confidence to try new things.
Imagine a child raised in an environment where her parents made every effort to affirm her. From birth, her parents told her that she was an intelligent girl filled with creativity, and she could do anything if she put her mind to it. Her parents stated how kind she was and what a lovely personality she had. Because her parents continuously affirmed her by expressing how awesome and gifted she was, the young girl naturally believed them and acted accordingly.
Her confidence in herself attracted positive interactions with her friends and teachers. Due to the reinforcement of her parents' words, it became easy to get along with others and be academically successful in school. Furthermore, due to the girl's beliefs and actions, others around her marveled at how intelligent, creative, kind, and lovely she was- all because of her parents' daily affirmations.
Unfortunately, words also have the power to tear down a soul. Imagine a child raised in an environment where his parents were antagonistic. His parents would tell him that he was no good and could not do anything right. Every chance his parents would get, they would say to him that he would not amount to anything. The parents would point out every little mistake or failure that he made. As a result, the constant pickings from his parents caused this young man to believe that he was not good for anything; therefore, he acted accordingly.
Because the young boy was not confident and thought he was not smart enough to succeed in school, he never tried his hardest to understand what was taught. His lack of academic confidence led him to get in trouble and become defiant towards his teachers- all of this because negative words at home were tearing down this boy.
As teachers, we know that our students frequently hear negative and positive words about themselves from family members, teachers, friends, and strangers. We hope our students choose to believe the positive and uplifting words and ignore the negative ones. We equally hope that their home lives are filled with love, safety, and encouragement. However, we do not always know which child is longing for encouragement from us.
Yet, one thing we can do in our classroom is incorporate a daily affirmation time before we start instruction. We have the opportunity to teach students to empower themselves by reciting positive words each day. The idea is if students repeat positive statements about themselves daily, then students will eventually believe those statements and act accordingly.
Every morning, my Pre-K students recite the following class affirmation:
I am a smart child.
I am an awesome child.
I am kind to my friends, teachers, and family.
I am ready to learn.
Today is going to be a super day.
I must genuinely attest that since my classes have been reciting this affirmation, my students are more confident to learn and try new concepts and are kinder toward their peers and teachers. Each morning, they are excited to enter the classroom, ready to learn, and are looking forward to having a super day. The classroom atmosphere is quite positive as I make sure to point out individuals who are being kind friends or tell them how intelligent they are when solving a complex problem. My students act according to the class affirmation.
I recommend that teachers have their students recite affirmations as a class. You may want to have a short lesson on what affirmations are and teach how to use them in their personal lives. I guarantee you will see positive changes in your students once they practice reciting affirmations.