Resilience Develops by Handling the Small Things That Don't Go Our Way
Updated: Nov 19, 2019
Hello dear friends. I know my blog is a little later than usual but many times, even the best laid plans get thrown off course, and that’s what I want to talk about today.
Kids need to have structure in their lives. They feel more secure when they know what to expect. I noticed that when I would post the day’s schedule in my classroom, my students were more comfortable knowing what was coming. This is especially true for some special needs students. Believe it or not, kids perform better and are happier when structure and rules are in place, even if they complain about some of them, including their bedtime. Another thing I noticed is that they like to have a “winding down” time period between changes. If we were working on an activity and it was almost time to switch to the next subject area or go to Gym, they needed a few minutes to prepare for the change. I would let them know that they had to wrap it up and that we would be moving along in five minutes, and then two minutes. This was especially helpful when they were having fun in the playground. I would start ten minutes beforehand, then tell them when there was five, then two and then one minute remaining. There was an incredible difference in rounding them up when I did that as opposed to just telling them when the time was up. Try that at your next playdate or birthday party.
However, we know that even when we try to prepare and schedule things a certain way, life happens. Our routines and time frames get thrown off. As a teacher, I always had my lesson plans prepared, but they didn’t include the child who suddenly got sick or a nosebleed, the surprise fire drill, discipline issues that come up, or any other surprise things that would pop up. While kids need routine, they also need to learn that it is okay if things don’t go the way we expect them to. Explain to them that things will get off course and your day will not always go the way you planned, but you still need to roll with it. That’s how we develop resilience. When we learn to regularly handle the little things that don’t go our way with grace and patience, we might be a little more resilient handling the big things that will surely come up at some point in our lives.