THE EIGHT KEYS OF POSITIVE YOUTH DEVELOPMENT: #4 SELF

“Once I thought I was weird but now I know I am unique.”
-King, original Game Loft member

In high school and middle school individual differences are sometimes met with suspicion. Conformity is valued and difference, no matter how positive, is a reason for exclusion. At the Game Loft, in contrast, youth are encouraged to constantly expand their horizons from trying new food in the Loft kitchen, tackling a new board game, learning how to speak in public or expanding their range of gaming activities. Their skills, experiences and individuality is valued. Helping each youth uncover his or her individuality is one of our goals.

Discovering Self

Knowing yourself is part of the journey of discovering self-identity. All enrolled members take a Myers-Briggs personality profile survey and are interviewed for their preferences and ideas. For many the discovery that they have a unique Myers-Briggs personality profile is the first step on the exciting journey of discovering self. When a Loft member is in the 8th Grade they are encouraged to participate in the Circle of Care program (LINK). One of the goals of this program is discovering with the young person his or her gifts, talents, skills and knowledge and working out strategies for realizing those things that excite them, known in the field as SPARKS.

“I take them where they are and make them a star.” Mary Weaver, Founder of the Playhouse, Belfast, Maine.

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