18 May, 2022

Message from our Vice Principal

For many years, while in school, my self-confidence in many academic subjects, especially mathematics was low.

Our high school (ironic) Vice-Principal was also our teacher of mathematics who made sure during each lesson that she proved our lack of ability in this subject and her superiority over us in her mathematical knowledge.  From what I hear from time to time, such teachers can still be found in some of the local schools.  

Fortunately, we have learned by now that positive reinforcement is essential in the process of teaching and learning and raising student’s self-confidence helps them to become better learners.  Positive reinforcement does not mean saying that someone is always right but involves skillful ways of guiding a child towards discovering the truth.  The mentoring and guiding of students in the teaching and learning process must also be perceived as meaningful; students are very good in distinguishing between a meaningful positive reinforcement and just a cliché statement “well done”.     

Boosting a child’s self-confidence is not limited to academic subjects and it stretches outside the school with extracurricular activities being a prime example.   After arriving in Canada, I was initially often a bit annoyed when after failing to deliver in a volleyball game I was often told by my teammates “well done”.  Yet, I understood later on that it was better to hear this positive message rather than hearing about a lost game due to my unsuccessful spiking of the ball.  It also became clear to me then that we are all continuously on a learning curve, whether in a classroom or on the football field.  Positive reinforcement helps students and children to make such a learning curve less steep and it increases their chances of making this climbing trip more successful.

We educators at TBS ensure that our students are praised but not overpraised, we empower our students to become risk takers and inquirers, we focus on their strengths and passions and finally we celebrate their successes, perseverance and high effort. We believe that these are the ways of boosting students’ self-esteem and confidence while helping them to become more efficient and successful. We encourage all parents to do the same and to support your children in becoming more knowledgeable, better skilled and more confident learners.

DR JACEK ŁATKOWSKI

Vice Principal