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Date: 20 Oct 2004
Time: 08:59:34 -0500
Remote Name: 188.8.131.52
Hi Emily, Thank you for writing. Your question has made me re-think what self-esteem is and how we could judge the self-esteem of another person. I know that I used to need concrete evidence that I was making a difference in a child's life. I needed that smile, a thank you from the parent, an increase in percentage fluent syllables or some other demonstration that the child had in some way improved under my care. Now I know this: we don't ever really know what our impact is upon another person. Some smiles and thank yous are not sincere. Some silence means that a person is too shy or inexperienced to express gratitude. Some children have learned to wear masks to get them through life. I must be aware that how the child appears on the outside is only the tip of the iceberg (to refer to Russ Hick's analogy for stuttering). So, I don't really know for certain how this workshop may have helped the children's self esteem except to say that they all appeared to enjoy the activity. Also, self-esteem comes from witnessing one's own competence. I think the posters that the children drew allowed them to witness their own competence at problem solving and seeing a CWS as a hero.