Bonus Summer Adventure Activity: Celebrate Learning from a Mistake You Made

Halfway Point Celebration 

We have reached the halfway point on our Summer Adventure together this year! If you haven’t had a chance to join in on the adventure there is still plenty of time. If you have already started, you can always enter more times. Remember, more entries means more chances to win!  

To celebrate our halfway point we have a guest post about celebrating our mistakes by Deb Sica, Alameda County Library’s Deputy County Librarian. How might you celebrate learning from a mistake you made? Answer this question as a bonus activity for Summer Adventure, and submit your response through our submission form for the chance to win a prize! 

Yay! I Made a Mistake! 

This is a guest blog written by Deb Sica. 

Hello there! Let me share right upfront that I make a lot of mistakes! Sometimes I make several mistakes a day, sometimes I even make several mistakes an hour. And honestly, I don’t think I’m alone in making mistakes. I think we all do, but that’s how we learn and grow.  

In the past, when I made a mistake, I would get really down about it, even feel embarrassed, frustrated or vulnerable. But one day, I learned another way to react to my mistakes. A wise librarian shared with me that when she made mistakes, her first reaction was to say aloud in a celebratory tone, “Yaaaayyy! I made a mistake!” Then she’d toss up her hands in glee as if her mistake was a good thing.  

I was flummoxed and looked at her with so much confusion. But she was very serious. She said, “Mistakes are learning opportunities. And learning is something that should be celebrated.”  I thought about it and came to the conclusion that she was absolutely right! So I started celebrating my mistakes in the same way. Instead of feeling embarrassed or trying to cover them up, I started looking at my mistakes as good things, as lessons to be learned. I wanted to know why they were mistakes, what I could do to learn from them, and what I could have done differently if I got a do-over. 

Soon, curiosity and kindness took the place of embarrassment and frustration. The more mistakes I made and celebrated, the more I grew to understand myself. What I found out after just a few mistake celebrations was that others felt much more relaxed and not so fearful about making their own mistakes. They, too, started celebrating their mistakes. 

Let me give you an example: I made a mistake with this very blog post! I didn’t schedule myself time to write it. I had planned on writing out my mistake story in great detail and submitting it a long time ago. Now, I’m crunched for time and writing this under a tight deadline. I was asked to share it with you all weeks ago. But time got away from me; deadlines came and went. I wrote an apologetic email thinking. My mistake was missing my deadline. 

But of course I needed to celebrate my mistake and learn from it. “Yaaaayyyy, I made a scheduling and timing mistake.” What did I learn? A lot about not leaving things to the last minute, making sure I knew what was being asked of me, and balancing my workload so I didn’t miss any deadlines. These lessons were important reminders, especially since my inaction impacted other peoples’ deadlines. Their work is just as important as mine is. My mistake would reroute their deadlines, too. That was really important for me to correct. 

But rather than being upset with myself, I looked at my schedule and made the time to write this. I celebrate this lesson with you in hopes that you, too, can see your mistakes as celebrations. And since I’m sure I’m not alone in making lots of mistakes… What mistakes did you make today? And how can you celebrate them?

Ready for an Adventure? 

There are plenty of ways to adventure with the library this summer. We’ll have story lists and programs related to our theme, A World of Stories, to attend every week. 

Latino/Latina/Latinx Books for Kids - Summer Adventure 2021

List created by ACLVivianJ

Children: Dive into some books with Latino characters. Alameda County Library invites you to come along for our 2021 Summer Adventure, A World of Stories! From June 15 to August 15, let’s explore new and creative ways to share our stories while also learning about others’ stories through listening, watching, and of course—reading! Pick up an Adventure Guide at any AC Library location starting June 15.

View Full List