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JER NETWORK           

Creatives Blog

An ongoing series of informational entries

Our Latest Blog Entry

March 23, 2021

From Courage to Confidence With Your Kids Crafting Club with Chris & Stef

Wouldn't it be nice if you could just wake up one day and magically feel confident? That would be amazing, right!?

What if I told you that confidence shouldn’t be your goal?

So, let’s dive in.

Today we’re going to discuss how you can go from courage to confidence with your kids crafting club.

When we started teaching arts and crafts to kids we were terrified. We were NOT confident.

We had no clue what supplies to use, what types of crafts kids could do at their different ages and we did not have a studio.

Now what do people do when they are interested in a topic?

We google it!

And If you google arts and crafts studio the most beautiful pictures pop up of these gorgeous spaces with smiley kids, super engaged and having a ball!

Ugh, talk about a confidence plummet!

Where do I even start??

If you’re reading this you probably have a dream of starting or growing your creative kids club.

But maybe just maybe you feel a bit like I did when I started out.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could just wake up one day and magically feel confident?

We wish, right!?

What if I told you that confidence shouldn’t be your goal?

Your goal should be a little thing called courage.

I read this somewhere the other day and it stuck to me:

Confidence says: I know what I’m doing

Courage says: I don't know what I’m doing but I’ll try it anyway.

Courage comes before confidence, because to be 100% honest with you, total confidence in your own abilities before you get started with any new venture is a fairy tale.

It’s having the courage to try that really matters.

I’ve said this before but we can really learn from kids. Many of us work with kids on a daily basis in our crafting classes, observe and see how they approach life. I want you to embrace the courageous mindset that kids have.

They just GO FOR IT, if they fall, they cry a little bit and get back up and then they try again, they experiment and when they fail, then it’s not a big deal.

Remember that running your own kids crafting club is fun, experiment and if you fall, remember that it is okay and normal and get back up, learn from it and try again.

Success is in having the courage to try and to take action more than in the actual end result.

It is all about having the courage and being brave to make the decision to not let it stop you.

In today’s episode we’re going to share - tips for boosting your courage to start that thing you’ve been wanting and dreaming of starting:

Tip 1: Do things that scare you

You can’t just wish confidence into existence. That’s just not how it works unfortunately.

Confidence comes from trying something you’re scared to do and realizing: ‘ahh that wasn't so bad’ now you have the confidence to try it again - THAT’s how we gain confidence. 

Think back to when you dropped your kids off at preschool the first day. Were they scared? Did they cry a little? Probably, it must have been so scary, they’ve never been to school before, they didn’t know what to expect.

But then after a couple of days, they didn’t cry anymore, because they did it, realized it was okay and then they got confidence to do it again.. And after a few weeks? They probably forgot to give you a kiss as they just ran to their friends.

Confidence is on the other side of doing things that are scary to you.

When you’re thinking about starting your kids crafting club, perhaps that first scary step is to name your club or phone a possible venue, or maybe just to admit to yourself and your family out loud that you have a dream.

Have faith in yourself, push yourself a little and you’ll be surprised by what you can accomplish!

Tip 2: Don’t compare yourself to others

Theodore Roosevelt said: “Comparison is the thief of joy” and I think that comparison is also the thief of courage.

The biggest problem with comparing your success with someone else’s is that you never know what chapter of their life you are comparing yourself with.

Some smart person once said: Don't compare your chapter 1 with someone else's chapter 20.

We’re all on our own unique journeys, so don’t worry about comparing where you’re at with someone else, because your A to B might be their Y to Z. 

t’s sooo easy especially with social media and the internet these days to crush your own dreams by comparing yourself to someone else who’s been at it for sooo much longer than you. This is just not fair to yourself. 

Tip 3: What will you lose out on if you don’t have the courage to try?

What are you searching and yearning for? Perhaps it’s wanting to be more creative, or to earn extra money for your family doing something you love, perhaps you yearn to be part of a community or you want to make an impact in kids lives or perhaps you are looking for something to give you a new purpose in life.

Try to think of the thing that’s greater than the fear of not doing the thing you want to do.

For example: if you’ve been meaning to start a creative business and you don’t do something about it: what will you be losing out on:

You will not do what you love and be creative every day

You will not meet awesome new big and little people and make an impact on lives

You will not make some extra money for your family

I can go on...

Thinking of the things I am scared of in this way always puts things in perspective for me and it pushes me to action.

And this is how we gain momentum, by taking action through fear.

Tip 4: Get over the fear of failure

Failure will happen, failure is part of life, think of the example I used earlier, kids fail all the time, no one starts walking without falling first. Let me tell you one thing, having fears and self doubt is normal and you are not alone! A number of unhealthy mindsets have plagued my crafting club life, and anxiety and fear have crippled me at times.

The key is to not let those fears stop you from following your passion and dreams, from living, from spreading creativity to the world and doing the work that you were destined to do.

We might never be 100% confident in ourselves and our abilities when we do something new that we really want for the first time, the important thing is to get into action, get in the game, figure out what it really is that you want to get confident about and then go for it!

So to wrap up, let's do a quick recap on the 4 tips:

Do things that scare you

Don’t compare yourself to others

What will you lose out on if you don’t have the courage to try?

Get over the fear of failure

So there you have it!

Courage comes before confidence, and it’s having the courage to TRY that really matters.

Now, I’d love to hear from you.

What ONE action are you going to take this week to move you closer to your dream?

Chris & Stef

Our Second Blog Entry

February 23, 2021

Our Top 10 Favorite Kids Arts and Crafts 

1. Recyclable Materials

2. Paint brushes

3. Paint

4. Sharpies

5. Paper

6. Crayons (oil-based and jumbo)

7. Hot glue gun

8. Pipe cleaners

9. Duct Tape

10. Things from around the home

Our First Blog Entry

January 23, 2021

3 Easy Ways to Add STEAM to Your Kids Crafting Classes

How do we prepare children to succeed in the future in a world that is rapidly changing? For future jobs that may not even exist yet!!

 Learning STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) skills may be one of the most important skills that today’s children will need for the future.

Don’t worry, It's actually really easy to teach STEAM skills through creative crafting and you don't have to be a scientist or mathematician to do so!

Today we’re going to talk about 3 easy ways to add STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) to your kids crafting classes.

Okay be honest: Does the whole STEAM concept freak you out just a little bit?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone!

Kids need to be inspired to start exploring, discovering and asking questions from a young age.

Because here’s the thing: We learn by failing.

This is how we innovate - we fail our way to the right answer. And Engineers fail all the time, we just call it something else.. We call it ‘Data collecting’.

The focus and importance on STEAM is growing worldwide.

Today we explain:

what STEAM is and why it’s important for kids to practice STEAM skills and

we’ll give 3 easy practical ways for you to add STEAM elements to your crafting classes

According to a report published by Dell Technologies: 85% of the jobs that will exist in 2030 haven't even been invented yet.

Everywhere around us are new kinds of opportunities and careers that didn’t exist a decade ago.

So how do you prepare kids for jobs that don't even exist yet?

We recently asked a few of our crafty kids what they want to be when they grow up… here’s what they said:

Gianluca, age 6 wants to be an inventor and make youtube videos

Sarah, age 8 wants to design video games

Oliver, age 7 wants to work in artificial intelligence


Can you remember what you wanted to be when you were a kid? Kids today already think differently.

It was less than 3 decades ago (in 1991) that the World Wide Web became publicly available, think of all the new opportunities that the internet created. Where will we be and what will our kids be doing in the next few decades?

More importantly, how can we provide kids learning experiences that will prepare them to become inventors, AI experts, designers and who knows what else?

How are we to educate children for technologies that have not been developed yet and careers and opportunities that don't even exist yet?

STEAM is a hot topic as it is an integrated approach to learning that develops critical thinking and encourages kids to think more broadly about real-world problems with a hands-on approach.

Introducing STEAM to kids from a young age, cultivates collaborative exploration and problem solving. Problem-based learning-through-play is hands down the best way to get your kids excited about STEAM. Kids learn best if it’s through play.

How to add STEAM to your kids crafting classes?

The good news is you do not have to be an engineer, scientist or mathematician to develop STEAM skills in your students and kids. 

STEAM learning happens naturally everyday as kids explore, experiment, play, and try new things.

It's actually really easy to teach STEAM skills through crafting,

STEAM learning happens naturally when kids craft as they get to explore, experiment, play, and try new things.

Here are a few practical ways that you can try to introduce STEAM-learning into your arts and crafts classes:

1. Nurture curiosity by asking questions

A creative crafting class is a wonder world playground for developing creativity and innovation, and the best part is that there’s not only 1 solution to problems, there are millions!

Give your students the freedom to discover and learn.

The best way for you to facilitate creativity and nurture curiosity is to ASK LOADS OF QUESTIONS.

Inspire your students by asking questions, rather than just giving instructions or offering solutions. Give them some time to think about it and figure it out.

Problem solve together. If a student struggles with a task, don’t take over and do the step for them, ask lots of questions and try to figure out what the solution is together.

2. Let go!

Learning through experimenting can get a bit messy sometimes and it can be hard for us as adults to not step in and say ‘look what you’ve done, let’s clean up this mess’.

Kids are natural STEAM learners. For adults, it may look like they are just making a mess, splashing paint around and unpacking and repacking and sometimes even bending things until they break, but this is how they learn - by investigating, discovering and trying new things.

It’s important to let go and give kids a chance to explore and discover.

3. Celebrate the failures

As I mentioned before, learning from failure is how we innovate.

Therefore, if my calculations are correct, every mistake we make should be bringing us closer to success?

Now that sounds to me like something worth celebrating!

How often do you celebrate your kid’s learning?

Showcase your kid’s projects and creations! Don’t forget to showcase the process as well, as the process demonstrates that it takes a series of failures to get us to the eventual success.

Success takes time.

So to wrap up, let's do a quick recap on the 4 ways to add STEAM to your crafting classes:

Nurture curiosity by asking questions. 

1. Remember to not take over, assist by asking questions.

2. Let go

3. Celebrate the failures

So there you have it!