You Belong Here: Fostering Students’ Sense of Belonging
Where do you go when you feel like you don’t belong?
In youth development, the Circle of Courage is based on the principles of belonging, mastery, independence, and generosity.
Today, we will delve deeper into the quadrant of belonging, which emphasizes the importance of having a sense of connectedness to someone or something. When a student experiences belonging, he or she feels comfortable and at peace as a member of a family, club, church group, classroom, or other social circles.
At iCan Dream Center, we strive to ensure every student experiences a sense of belonging.
“A positive sense of belonging nurtures self-esteem, self-worth, and ultimately equips children with the ability to develop healthy relationships with others” (Brendtro).
When adults struggle with their sense of belonging, they often have the option to leave an uncomfortable situation. For students in an educational setting, there is no option to leave. Teachers must create a welcoming environment for students that fosters their sense of belonging and, subsequently, their academic, social, and emotional development.
Creating the future means creating ways to encourage students to not only stay but to thrive. At iCan Dream Center, we work to ensure that students of all abilities truly feel like they belong, as this is the first step to helping them thrive.
The Circle of Courage and Positive Psychology.
- Source: Reclaiming Children & Youth. Fall2005, Vol. 14 Issue 3, p130-136. 7p. 1 Diagram.
- Author(s): Brendtro, Larry K.; Brokenleg, Martin; Van Bockern, Steve