Why Should We Teach Kids About Resilience?

There's no way to protect children from encountering obstacles. The best we can do is teach them how to overcome challenges, learn from them, and grow stronger as a result.

By Momentous Institute | Sep 07, 2015
Why Should We Teach Kids About Resilience

Resilience is the art of getting back up. It’s not possible to go through life without struggles, but we can choose how to respond to the struggles life throws at us. Resilient people view challenges as opportunities. They understand that things won’t always be perfect, but that each failure or stumble is a chance to learn something new or try again in a different way.
 
The book “Strengthening Family Resilience” by Froma Walsh lists some of the qualities of resilient people, which include the ability to make meaning of crisis and challenge, maintain a positive outlook, be flexible, and be collaborative problem solvers.
 
It is so important to teach kids about resilience. After all, there’s no way that we can protect them from encountering challenges (nor should we). The best we can do is teach them how to overcome challenges, learn from them, and grow stronger as a result.
 
So how to build resilience? We’ll share plenty of strategies, but the is that connected relationship between caregiver/parent/teacher/adult and child. (You’re probably noticing a trend here.) When an adult sends the message, “You can do this. I believe in you!” a child learns to feel capable. Allow children to do things on their own. Encourage them to think of their own way to solve small problems, and let them try to work through it before jumping in.
 
There’s a quote from Maria Montessori, “Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.” Allow children to try, and try again. Sit with them as they fumble through it and encourage them to keep going. Sending the message of confidence and competence helps build a culture of resilience.

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