Perhaps one of the strongest messages of the IM4U program is the simple fact that it is typical to be good at some things and not at others. This is HUGE for young students because there is so much to learn. It can be emotionally overwhelming when learning how to read, hit a ball, or multiply, particularly when others have already accomplished the task. But when we give students the freedom and support to learn at their own pace, they bloom.

The social and emotional concept of “growth mindset” is essential for helping students realize that, though they may not have yet mastered a skill, with a strong belief in themselves, resilience, and practice, they can and will.


Students will listen to the Ooops And Yays song and then discuss the idea of strengths and weaknesses.

Principle Overview

Look around and you will notice friends and family who are really good at some things and not so good at others. While adults might grasp this as something normal, students often don’t and can perceive their own strengths and weaknesses in distorted ways. When we demonstrate our own strengths and weaknesses, we help students come to terms with their own, and help dispel the illusion that any of us are better, worse, more, or less worthy than others.

Goals and Objectives:

  • Celebrate the things we are good at.
  • Discuss the things we find challenging.
  • Identify the similarities and differences in the group.
  • Preview Ooops And Yays music video to better facilitate discussion.
  • Use action pictures during the discussion and tally the number of students who raise their hand.
  • Encourage students to make a goal to work with an activity they haven’t yet learned.
  • Students can draw pictures of things they feel they are good at and things they are still learning for a class book or bulletin board.
Knowing about strengths and weaknesses in ourselves and others helps us grow, learn, and work together. The Me Too! Oh, Wait! Not Me! skill builder helps students gain an understanding of their individual strengths and weaknesses and the diversity of those in their class. They also think about how to encourage their peers to use their strengths and keep trying when they struggle with a weakness. This discussion provides another opportunity for students to discover their individual “ooops” and “yays!”

Skill Builder
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Activity Steps

  • Connector.
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    Begin a discussion about strengths and weaknesses. You might tell your students about something you excel at, such as swimming, baking, or playing an instrument. It grabs their interest if you can share something they don’t know about you. Explain that this is a strength that you have. Ask:

    What word does Uncle Jim use in the song to talk about strength?

  • Connector.

    Invite students to share something they are good at.

  • Connector.

    Next, tell students they can raise their hand or stand up for each item they are good at. Offer choices that reflect the abilities and challenges of your group. You might ask:

    Who is good at bouncing a ball? Math? Swimming? Dancing? Drawing? Eating pizza?

  • Connector.

    Encourage students to look around and see who is also good at the same thing.

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    Help students see that they might be good at one thing and not another, but that everyone is good at something! We all have strengths and weaknesses.

  • Connector.

    Next, talk about how sometimes we have a skill that is not strong or can be called a weakness. Share a weakness for you such as knitting, whistling, or math. You might explain that you are working on this but you haven’t learned it yet. Ask:

    What word does Uncle Jim use in the song when talking about a weakness?

  • Connector.

    Help students understand that we are all in the process of learning something. Invite them to raise hands and share a weakness or a skill they are working on and haven’t yet mastered.

  • Connector.

    Reflect on the feelings associated with having strengths and weaknesses. Ask:

    How does it feel to be good at something?
    How does it feel when you work hard at something and finally accomplish it?
    How does it feel when there is something you are not good at?
    What can you do to change it?

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