I have just spent the day at a vision workshop with the inspiring Vanessa Stottor and was particularly interested by her personal observation that our pass or fail culture in education should not be allowed to stifle who our children are as individuals.

It goes without saying that education must lead to academic results which realistically reflect each child’s full potential, but are parents and schools so focussed on this goal that they are neglecting the just as important need to celebrate and encourage creativity and develop each child’s imagination?

Creativity and critical thinking are both important life skills. The right side of the brain is the creative side and the left one the more analytical side. Most of us have a personality with tendencies towards one side or the other. Identifying this in your child will help a great deal in supporting them in developing their true all-round potential.

For some, defining success through art, music, drama or sport may be far more relevant than examination certificates. The measurement criteria for success should be different to each child as an individual, where the focus is on their own personality, strengths and interests. Motivation comes from rewarding success in whatever form it presents itself and not trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

In my opinion, successful business entrepreneurs rarely have a CV which reflects high academic attainment. More importantly seems to be an ability to dream up a good idea and having the confidence to go out, work hard and make it will happen.

Surrounding children with positivity, a sense of feeling good about themselves and allowing them to dream, will build confidence and self-esteem, inevitably inspiring all-round success.

To learn more about Vanessa and how she brings positivity to all whose lives she touches, visit her website www.vanessastottor.com