Established in 1993, River View Christian Academy’s purpose is to provide a safe, structured, and supportive setting for struggling teenage girls, 12-17 years old. River View encourages positive change in girl students who have struggled academically due to negative influences and low-self esteem.
River View is not a residential treatment center, or therapeutic boarding school, but we have found that a structured and caring environment can make an enormous difference in correcting behavioral issues among teenagers. River View understands that parents want to send a girl to a safe, monitored environment where she receives personal care, and guidance that helps heal emotional issues–whether brought on by trauma, foster care, adoption or abuse.
And while the young teen girl enrolls our residential boarding school to improve her academics and learn positive life skills, River View Christian Academy also helps teen girls struggling with low self-esteem issues improve their mental and physical health.
Call us to learn more: 1-800-494-2200
Understanding the Importance of Good Self-Esteem in Young Girls
For kids and teens, self-worth encompasses how much they like who they are and how satisfied they are with themselves. 1
Good self-esteem provides the fuel for seeking out challenges, coping with adversity, developing positive relationships with peers, and taking good care of oneself. It leads kids and teens to value who they are and strive to be their best self.
On the other hand, low self-worth can undermine a belief in oneself and reduce motivation to invest in schoolwork and extracurricular activities, and numb the curiosity which drives the pursuit of interests. It can lead kids/teens to become socially withdrawn and develop unhealthy ways of dealing with problems, putting them at risk for anxiety and depression.
As every child will experience challenges and setbacks, what are the signs that something deeper is happening, something which is shaking their sense of self? The fundamental principle is to detect systematic changes in their behavior that go beyond the usual fluctuations.
Consider the following:
- Increasing and persistent physical complaints—especially of headaches and stomachaches—along more general expressions of not feeling good.
- Changes in basic daily routines, including sleep (too much or too little) and eating (too much or too little), especially on school days.
- Acting out (being irritable, having outbursts, being noncompliant) and/or withdrawing (being non-responsive, not talking as much).
- Expressions of frustration and boredom.
- Increasing negativity about themselves and/or anxieties about capabilities.
How Self-Esteem Develops
Self-esteem can start as early as babyhood. It develops slowly over time. It can start just because a child feels safe, loved, and accepted. It can start when a baby gets positive attention and loving care.
As babies become toddlers and young children, they’re able to do some things all by themselves. They feel good about themselves when they can use their new skills. Their self-esteem grows when parents pay attention, let a child try, give smiles, and show they’re proud.
As kids grow, self-esteem can grow too. Any time kids try things, do things, and learn things can be a chance for self-esteem to grow.
This can happen when kids:
- make progress toward a goal
- learn things at school
- make friends and get along
- learn skills — music, sports, art, cooking, tech skills
- practice favorite activities
- help, give, or be kind
- get praise for good behaviors
- try hard at something
- do things they’re good at and enjoy
- are included by others
- feel understood and accepted
- get a prize or a good grade they know they’ve earned
When kids have self-esteem, they feel confident, capable, and accepted for who they are. 2
The Importance of Independence to Self-Esteem
Without a doubt, the more people learn how to be independent and do things independently, the higher their self-esteem will be, and the better they’re going to feel about themselves.
Independence is one of the most important characteristics that a child can have. In fact, if you tested kids with solid self-esteem, you would find that they score high on independence and high on problem-solving skills.
But not all parents realize that because no one tells them that truth. Independence is one of the most important qualities a child can acquire in life, and parents should be helping build that independence. 3
River View Helps Girls Build Positive Self-Esteem
One of the most important aspects of redirecting a teen who is struggling is for them to be in an environment that is structured with a routine schedule that they can count on. We believe in student boundaries in all areas of life. Another reason for our success over 25 years at River View Christian Academy is the high level of involvement of staff and parents.
Located on 45 acres in the beautiful hill country of central Texas, River View’s girl students are also responsible for garden and animal chores, in addition to school and homework. Of course, there are fun school activities, as well as the amazing parks in the area. That’s one way we help girls build positive self-esteem, by living an active, supportive, responsible lifestyle.
We also provide nutritious meals, and healthy exercise and activities. We want each girl student to experience positive benefits of learning boundaries and responsibility, as well as improve her daily life in a challenging environment.