Words to Inspire...

The Stib spark-words aren’t just there to be another set of rules but rather to inspire our young minds to think about the way they look at the world and explore some fresh ideas to help them with life’s lumps and bumps. Our children can’t all be problem solvers, big thinkers or joy finders every minute of every day, but when they meet a tricky situation, it’s worth remembering what makes them pretty special in the first place and to give new behaviours a try.


good listener

“We have two ears and one mouth, so we should listen more than we say.” –Zeno of Citium, Greek Stoic Philosopher

If we always talk, talk, talk, we can’t learn at school or pre-school, be a good friend or avoid trouble with the grown-ups looking after us. Good listening shows good manners. Lots of grown-ups say, ‘Listen,’ but what does it mean? Listening isn’t just not talking, it’s about thinking about the words people are telling you – even if you don’t understand it all. It’s OK to ask questions; that’s good as it shows you have really listened to what someone has said. Good listeners make people feel happy and cared for.  Not interrupting people when they are talking makes them know you are really taking the time to think about what they are saying to you. Listening can be hard work but it’s the most important way we can learn about the world and make people happy. Think how nice you feel when people listen to you. 

Inspire me! Listening can also be great fun. Check out some of these brilliant audio stories:

self believer

“Where you think you can, or you think that you can't, you are right" Henry Ford, Business Leader

Being a self believer means you feel good about yourself and confident about who you are.  Being a self believer doesn’t mean that you never feed sad, or that you are perfect; nobody is perfect all the time (not even grown-ups). We all make mistakes. We can’t always do the things we set out to do YET, but people who believe in themselves know this is OK. They know that giving something a try and getting it wrong is better than not trying at all. Even if they can’t do something this week, if they keep trying, maybe they can do it the next. Think about what you tell yourself: if you believe ‘I can do it,’ ‘I am brave,’ ‘I like myself,’ you are half way there. Self believers know that they try their best and are proud of themselves just the way they are. 

Inspire me! Why not try making a ‘you are jar’ crammed with descriptions of you that make you proud! Here’s how:


peace keeper

"No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted.” Aesop, Greek Storyteller

Everyone argues sometimes, but remember hate spreads hate and love spreads love. If one of your friends says something mean, it’s easy to say something mean back, then they say something mean and……the whole ‘mean’ cycle just keeps going. Think about if a friend says something kind to you?

You then want to say something kind to them, you make them feel special and they want to say something else kind to you because they are feeling happy.

Good peace keepers know that it’s important to stop unkind behaviour and words and are brave enough to be the ones to use kind actions that show that being positive makes everyone happier.

Inspire me! Read about the amazing work of Peace Jam:


“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.” Bernard M. Baruch, Political Advisor

It’s hard not to do what everyone else is doing, but it is important to be true to yourself and not always go with what everyone else thinks. We all have a little voice in our head that tells us what we think is right and a good freestyler knows to listen to this voice.  It’s good to have your own ideas and to find the things that YOU love doing and not going along with something you don’t think is right. There is only one you, so think about all the great things that make you who you are.  If people are being mean, know you can ignore them and feel comfortable with yourself and your choices. As well as being a freestyler you might have heard people talk about ‘being an individual’ or being true to ‘themselves’. They are the same words reminding you to remember what’s good about YOU. Don’t worry if you are different from other people - and be happy doing your own thing.

Inspire me! Ask a grown-up to show you some of the brilliant ‘People are Awesome Kids Addition’ videos on YouTube:

world changer

“Be the change you want to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi,  India Independence Leader

We aren’t just talking about you changing the whole world, but your own world.  Can you look around and think about what you could do to make something in the world you live in better?  Making changes aren’t as hard as you think; you can do small things that make a big difference by giving up some of your time and talents to help other people.

Are you great at drawing? Do you know someone unhappy? Could you draw them a picture to cheer them up? Can you see lots of rubbish around you? Could you go with a grown up and some friends to clear it up? Do you like sport? music? reading? Could you ask people to sponsor you in a challenge to raise some money for people who don’t have as much as you do. Being glad of all the good things around you, and thinking about how you can make the things that aren't so good a bit better is all your need to be a fantastic world changer.

Inspire me! might think just because you are a child you can’t do much to change the world, but read about 10 inspirational world-changing children who have just done some great things:

earth lover

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” Dr Seuss, Author

We only have one world and all the things on it (the resources) are very important because when they are gone, they are gone forever, which is called being ‘non-renewable’.  We need to protect our planet but around the world we throw away too much rubbish, create too much pollution and use up our resources too quickly. There are easy things you can do to be a great earth lover, like not dropping rubbish, turning out lights when you are not using them, not wasting water and recycling. It can feel a bit like there is so much to do and it isn’t easy to know where to start; you might think that just one person can’t make much difference, but if we all do what we can everyday then our world would be more protected - so part of being an earth lover is to also encourage the people around you to do their bit too!

Inspire me! There are some amazing earth lovers doing amazing things around the world, so join them!   and 

joy finder

“From there to here, and here to there, funny things are everywhere.” Dr Seuss, Author

Joy is great happiness and the world is full of fun things to make us all joyful.  Children are much better than grown-ups at finding a way to play and have fun in just about any situation they are in because they can see the magic in everything.  They know that being happy comes from them and their imaginations, but as we get older it’s easy to think that the ‘things’ we buy are what makes us happy, but great joy finders know the secret to being happy is to appreciate all the little lovely moments in life:  to be grateful with things just the way they are and in finding fun in whatever they are doing, no matter how dull it may seem at first. Finding happiness in ordinary things like digging a hole, drawing a picture, chasing bubbles or jumping in a puddle makes you a brilliant joy finder.

Inspire me! Look at an everyday object like a cardboard box and let your imagination run wild!

big thinker

“No dreamer is ever too small. No dream is ever too big.” Anonymous

So many great things in our world start with an idea in somebody’s head.  If you decide you can do something, you will be well on the way to doing it. What makes a big thinker is somebody who is prepared to try new things – like sports, food, going to new places, learning a new game or making a new friend. Big thinkers know there is a big world out there and take the time to learn about it and the other people who live in it.  When you are excited to learn new things every day about our world; like other countries and all the people living in them, space, oceans and the animal kingdom, how things work or what you want to be when you are older - you are well on your way to becoming a brilliant big thinker.

Inspire me! The world is a big place filled with amazing people and things to see. Check out some of these colouring templates and get stibiling


"If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales."  Albert Einstein, theoretical physicist

People have been telling stories since time began, even before they knew how to write. Stories help us to understand the world, but they also fire up imagination and free up our minds. Stories come in pictures, film, books, cartoons, plays, poems and talk, so it's no wonder they are so important to our everyday lives.

Children especially, love telling stories - which helps them spark their inner superhero and enjoy magic, mystery and escape. You might think you need to be some kind of author or a grown-up to tell a great story, but you're a story-teller already. Stories are a great way to enjoy the world and to be creative.

Inspire me! How many have you read? Check out this ultimate list of 100 children's books

team player

 “Sticks in a bundle are unbreakable.” Kenyan Proverb

You might think being a team player is something you do when you are playing sport, but that’s not the only time it’s great to be one.  We are around people all day, and to be a good team player we need to think about how we can use good manners and respect for the people around us all the time. It is about understanding that sometimes what is best for you, isn’t what is best for everyone. We all have a role to play; we are all good at different things and being a team player means you value what everyone does and you know that you aren’t more important than anyone else in your group. We can be happy when people do better than us and we know that we can do more together than on our own. As one person, we aren’t as strong as when we are in a group – we can often do a lot more when we work together.

Inspire me! Take a look at how animals have used teamwork to get what they want!

problem solver

  “A problem is a chance for you to do your best.” Duke Ellington, American Jazz Legend

We all come across times when we don’t know what to do and feel a bit worried when we have a problem.  Often, children ask a grown up if they don’t know what to do. This is a good thing, but remember it’s also good to try and think about how you can solve some of the problems you come across yourself. Being a problem solver doesn’t mean you can’t ask for help, but have a good think about what a solution to your problem might be first? Can you think through what would happen if you decided to try out some of your solutions? Would they be fair and make everyone feel happy? You can always talk to a grown-up about your ideas and then, when you feel confident in deciding which solution you want to try; go for it! If it doesn’t work, no problem, you should feel proud you gave it a go and just try again.

Inspire me! Did you know lots of children have looked around, seen problems and come up with solutions that they now make money from?

great leader

“If there is no wind, row.” – Latin Proverb

You don’t have to be the loudest, oldest or most confident person to be a great leader. Anyone can be one. Leading people isn’t about bossing them around until they do what you say, it is about being your best self and a great role model that other people then want to follow. Great leaders don’t just tell people what to do, they set a good example and think about what’s good for everyone around them. Can you see what the quietest person in your group wants to play and suggest to your other friends to try their idea?   Great leaders do the right thing even if nobody can see them doing it, and they stand up for other people, even if it’s a hard thing to do.

Inspire Me! Read about Thandiwe Chama, who at eight-years-old walked her class of 60 class mates to find a school with a teacher in Zambia: