We did it, everyone, session one is in the bag! So… what did we do exactly? What has my child learned, and what comes next?
As the father of a five-year-old in Discovery, I’m very happy with what I have seen from my daughter this session. While it may not all be measurable, and most of the work I see her bring home is art projects, I know she is learning plenty.
First and foremost, she loves school! On multiple occasions, she has not wanted to leave at pick up time. This alone is an amazing thing, that I don’t think most children experience. A big part of this is because ESTEAM is fun, and she is creating close friendships with her tribemates. Building these friendships now will serve her well as she continues her journey and works directly with these students to accomplish their goals, hold each other accountable and of course continue to have fun in the process.
The term tribemate is one she uses often along with character callouts, star chart, phoenix bucks, badge, studio, guide. These are all words and concepts that she was completely unaware of 3 weeks ago. For a five year old that’s major growth and learning. I’m sure contract, quest, freedom level, peace table, etc will be on her radar as the year progresses. Again, this is great foundational work that she will build upon as she continues her journey.
Depending on where you’re at on your parenting journey all these “soft skills” may be sounding a bit… well, soft to you. When it comes to academics, I have seen a big increase in my daughter’s interest in writing since starting school. With my help, she likes to write the names of our family members and even wrote her first sentence “I am in New York with my friend.” recently. With the help of ESTEAM, I know she’s getting the independence and personal responsibility needed to send me that sentence via text in a decade or so!
On a personal level, I’ve also seen a change in her behavior at home. This is where I’m sure you’d like to hear that ESTEAM will make your child a perfect angel, but in truth, I think she’s in a bit of a rut. I’ve seen an increase in arguing, loss of temper, and testing boundaries. While this can be annoying and difficult to deal with in the moment, I also know they are a side effect of growth and a way to use new cognitive skills in the real world. I also think that she is putting so much mental energy towards regulating her behavior and learning at school that she is simply wiped out by the time she gets home. If we’re doing our jobs as parents, this makes perfect sense as at home with their family is where they feel safe enough to push the envelope.
Overall this was a great session for my daughter, and I feel like she has laid the groundwork to continue growing as the year continues. Progress doesn’t happen in an orderly straight line, but rather through ups and downs, fits and starts. I look forward to seeing how she navigates the challenges that are sure to come…
About the Author: Daniel, father of 2, new Tribe members as of the 2020-2021 School Year.