“What contributes to the stability of certain temperament patterns has led numerous developmental specialist to examine the trait of resiliency and how it contributes to healthy emtional growth of our children. What does resiliency mean? Resiliency is the ability to overcome adversity in an adaptive manner”(Gonzales-Mena & Widmeyer Eyer, 2015, p. 214-215) . Why resiliency is very important in early learning and development?
Caregiving strategies to promote resiliency
- Know the children in your care ( developmentally, individually, and culturally) and build a positive, caring relationship with each child.
When a caregiver or teacher respect each child and build a positive, caring relationship it can “foster competency and inner strength. The idea of fostering inner strength and competency early in development is a valuable goal in an effort to prevent later concerns. Fostering resiliency in a person and showing respect are approaches that share the same goal of healthy emotional development”(Gonzales-Mena & Widmeyer Eyer, 2015, p. 215).
2. Build a sense of community in your program in which each child experiences a sense of belonging while appreciating the rights and needs of others.
In our program we include the daily structured outdoor and indoor activities in which everybody can participate. Each child feels the “sense of connectedness to others, being valued, while forming relationships with their peers and making contributions as part of the group, a community, the natural world” (How does learning happen?, 2014. p. 7)
3. Build strong relationships with families that foster trust and mutual respect.
When there is a strong relationship between families and teachers the child learns best and able to model the trust and mutual respect for others. Such early learning promotes emotional stability and health and posters lifelong coping skills.
4. Create a clear and consistent program structure so that children can predict routines and feel safe.
“In creating a clear and consistent program structure, it addresses the importance of physical and mental health and wellness. It incorporates capacities such as self-care, sense of self, and self-regulation skills”( HDLH?, 2014, p. 7)
5. Make learning meaningful and relevant so that each child can see connections and experience his or her own competence.
“When children are able to explore the world around them with their natural curiosity and exuberance, they are fully engaged. Through this type of play and inquiry, they develop skills such as problem solving, creative thinking, and innovating, which are essential for learning and success in school and beyond”(HDLH?, 2014, p. 7)
In conclusion, “resilient children have several specific characteristics. They have an active approach to life’s challenges; they look for resolutions to problems. They also seem to understand cause and effect; things usually happen for reason. Resilient children are able to gain positive attention; they are appealing and sociable,with an easygoing disposition. Finally, they see the world as a positive place, and they believe in a meaningful life” (Gonzales-Mena & Widmeyer Eyer, 2015, p. 215) .
Gonzales-Mena, J. (2015). Infants, Toddlers, and Caregivers; A Curriculum of Respectful, Responsive, Relationship-Based Care and Education; 10th ed.
Ontario Ministry of Education. (2014). How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years; Queen’s Printer for Ontario
What strategies that foster resiliency can you add?