What is Resilience?
It can be seen in the significant moments in our lives: how we respond to our greatest challenges, our ability “to overcome the odds,” to learn a new skill, and to perform under pressure.
Resilience is defined as the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. People who are resilient understand that one can learn more through challenging circumstances than sidestepping demanding situations. They retain an attitude which enables them to keep pressing forward through life’s obstacles. Resilient people recognize their own strengths and abilities. They demonstrate responsibility and self-control day in and day out.
Can resilience be taught?
Yes! Resilience is typically a result of how one is treated. Those who live and/or work in a negative environment usually demonstrate less resiliency than those who live and work in a positive environment. When individuals are surrounded by a strong community and receive regular praise for their contributions, they are more likely to learn positive social behaviors, goal-setting proficiencies, self-help skills, and problem-solving techniques. Equipped with these aptitudes, individuals begin to view failure as a learning opportunity and a time for self-evaluation.
How to teach resilience to young children
Very young children may not be able to express their feelings using words, so caring adults in their lives will need to be observant of changes in behavior which may suggest an increase in fear or anxiety. In this case, research demonstrates that relationships are of the upmost importance in the development of resilience. Parents encourage resilience when they actively support and love their child in addition to modelling goal-setting and problem-solving strategies.
At Stepping Stone School we honor the child by speaking to their worth, teaching them how to care for and treat others through our Communities of Character Curriculum. Children develop confidence as they explore and discover through our STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) program. We support children by praising their accomplishments and listening to their ideas and suggestions. We contribute to strong families as we work together to make Austin and its surrounding communities a better place to live and raise a family through the support of local charities and organizations. These aspects are woven together in our Platinum Learning for Life™ Curriculum building confident and supported children who are resilient in character.
American Psychological Association. (2003). “Resilience Guide: For Parents and Teachers.” Retrieved on January 25, 2016 from American Psychological Association American Psychological Associationhttp://www.apa.org/helpcenter/resilience.aspx