The Strength Switch – Combined PMSA Schools Parent and Teacher Presentation

“Visualise a light switch; flick the switch” was the advice that was shared with parents.

PMSA schools Brisbane Boys’ College, Clayfield College and Somerville House came together at Somerville House on Wednesday 6 June to welcome renowned academic, researcher, psychologist, author and speaker from Melbourne University, Professor Lea Waters.

In a highly informative and entertaining presentation, Professor Waters provided her professional and personal journey into the benefits of strengths-based parenting. 

Professor Waters explained that parents can inadvertently focus on their child’s weaknesses. By switching the focus to their children’s strengths, they can expect to better understand themselves and their children.

“This approach is about raising your children in a way where they develop inner resilience, optimism and achievement,” Professor Waters said.

“When we help our children identify and engage with their strengths, we are helping them to reach their potential,” she said.

Professor Waters shared many personal stories of interacting with her own children, and even examples of how to talk about problem behaviours and difficult situations.

“I decided that when the light switch is off, I am negative, everything is dark and I am seeing my children’s weaknesses.” 

“When the light switch is on, I am shining a light on their strengths,” she said.

Professor Waters explained that it was in the moments of tension between parents and their children that a strengths-based approach can yielded enormous results.

Positive personal development and wellbeing is an extremely important aspect of a PMSA school education. Teaching a growth mind-set through building resilience, learning from mistakes and success, continuous improvements and self-management is an increasingly multifaceted challenge in today’s complex world.

Professor Water’s website has a range of learning resources available for parents to access.

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