Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Exercising our Character Strengths

 In Autahi, we talk about our Character Strengths all the time. But what do we mean?

You have probably seen this poster around school. You can also find it on the school website.

As part of our Positive Education Model, we learn about the Character Strengths that we have as individuals. Each of us has Strengths that are more highly developed - and that we probably use more - as well as Strengths that we are working on. We are all building our characters because recognising and tapping into our Strengths helps us in our work, relationships and wellbeing, too. 

Here's an example from Autahi this week.

We have been revisiting our writing goals. In Autahi, when we talk about learning new things, we often use the image of climbing a maunga, small step by small step. We each have particular skills that we are focusing on, such as stretching out words and recording the sounds we can hear or remembering capital letters for our sentences. Some of us are also building our stamina to write more, or trying to use different, exciting words. We remind ourselves of our goals each time we write together, and it is a challenge. But this is where our Character Strengths can help us.

We did an experiment to help us think about which Strengths we can can draw on when we're climbing a maunga and learning new skills. 

Skipping is perfect for this because it can be tricky and takes a bit of practice. Some of us were a bit put off at the beginning. But thinking about using Bravery to try something new helped us to have a go. Some of us found skipping very frustrating. But we drew on our Perseverance to keep going. Some of us used our Strength of Humour: having a laugh when we got tangled up helped a lot. Other Strengths we found helpful were Hope, Love of Learning, Teamwork and Judgement.

Exploring some of our Strengths like this helped us to understand which Strengths would support us with our writing goals. We each chose the top two skills that we found most helpful. 

As we think about our goals and climbing the learning maunga, we will also think and talk about the Character Strengths that make us powerful and ready for the challenge.

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