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You meet your artists at the door with a smile, a high five, or a wave. They head to the carpet to choose their circle spot. When you join them at the carpet, they know exactly what’s coming next.
“It’s time for our mantra…together; here we go!”
“My mantra. I am positive. I am creative. I am mindful. I am amazing. I am an artist.”
As students recite these affirmations (complete with coordinating hand gestures), they are practicing positive self-talk.
As we know, everything gets better with practice, and that includes a student’s positivity and words of self-affirmation.
In your classroom, you can probably picture a student who has trouble focusing on the task at hand or gives up quickly when a problem arises. Having those students practice saying and motioning positive affirmations can make all the difference.
But let’s not forget, a mantra is not only meant for those students who struggle. It’s also intended to reinforce strong students.
Everyone needs positive affirmation. A mantra is simply an affirmation to inspire you to be your best self.
When creating your mantra, keep it simple. Ideally, your students should understand all the words and be able to recite them easily. If you teach at the elementary level, you may want to explain a few of the more complex words to your artists. We chose five adjectives that work for us. You are absolutely welcome to use our mantra or create one that works for you!
Once you have your words, brainstorm some motions or sign language actions to go along with each phrase. I bet your students would have lots of good ideas of motions to use…besides dabbing or flossing, of course.
Watch your students say the mantra. Look at their energy and smiles. Are there any students who are not reciting it? How might you check in with those artists?
Trust me; students will tell you if you forget the mantra!
You might try reciting your mantra in a loud voice, whisper, or in silence with just the hand motions.
Being able to control actions and emotions is a lifelong skill.
On top of all these benefits is the fact that students can use this mantra anywhere, not just in the art room. Plus, you can talk to students about how you use a mantra yourself. It’s a great way to make a connection.
You’ll be in awe of how quickly your students learn your art mantra. Their great sense of pride and ownership over the words will change the atmosphere of your entire classroom.
If you wish, use the downloadable resource below as a poster for your classroom. And remember, you are amazing! Keep being the very best version of you!
Do you use a mantra in your classroom?
How do you boost students’ self-esteem?
Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University (AOEU) or its academic offerings. Contributors use terms in the way they are most often talked about in the scope of their educational experiences.