We all want our children to be happy and part of achieving happiness is the ability to be resilient. Resilience means that children (or adults) can bounce back from setbacks, it means that they can stand back up again after failure or disappointment. Lacking resilience makes for a difficult ride in many areas. Here are some helpful ideas that you can implement to help you raise a resilient child which will be particularly useful as you support your child as they return to school after the lockdown.
When can I teach my child to be resilient?
The age of around 3 or 4 is when children begin to understand more about the world around them and to realise that they are individuals. It’s at this age that they begin to compare themselves to others. They start to notice who is taller, faster etc.
It’s from this age that we can teach our children to manage the little (and the big) difficulties which they will encounter from time to time – and to become more resilient.
How to begin
Teaching your child to be resilient means teaching them to be independent. To have self-control and to learn determination. This senior school in Leicestershire believes that all children have an innate capacity for hard work. With these attributes, resilience comes as part of the whole picture and you can begin as young as 3 or so.
Start with those small disappointments or hurts. A grazed knee can be met with either hysterics or quiet concern. Once the injury is assessed, lighten things up with a silly song or face. Teach your child that small hurts can be dealt with easily if a little humour is injected into the situation. Obviously, it’s a fine line – some children only want sympathy but the key is that they move on quickly, so change the activity, introduce a new idea to make them forget about what happened.
Similarly, in school, if they’re struggling in a particular area, teach them that working a little bit harder will help them to beat that tricky maths problem or whatever it is that’s bothering them.
Resilience grows with your child and if they can handle these little events at primary school age, then as they grow older they will manage bigger events with the same skill.