Article at a Glance:
In this series, we’ll be looking at ways to help teach children and teens resilience. It can be difficult to process disappointment, trauma, stress, anxiety, or depression and all of the negative feelings that can come with it. Resiliency will help children and teens deal with these negative feelings in a healthy and appropriate manner. Resilience is a skill, and like any skill, it can be strengthened through practice.
Humans are social by nature, so creating connections with peers is an important component in building resiliency. With the added stressors of a pandemic, from the unpredictability of school schedules to the isolation of quarantine, these connections play an even bigger part in maintaining health and well-being.
Marking occasions is a big part of strengthening connections. Help your child use their class roster to make a calendar of each student’s birthday. Creating a hand drawn card for each classmate’s birthday is one way to help your child feel proactive and connected to their classmates.
While friendships are important, some of the most important connections children and teens can develop are with family.
Another way to help build resiliency is to encourage a connection to your community.
Beyond the social aspect, building connections allows kids and teens to develop important interpersonal skills, such as empathy and critical listening skills. Building connections also helps them to establish support networks they can rely on. These networks become even more important during times of heightened stress and uncertainty.
The more connections that children and teens can create, the stronger their resilience will become. Building connections to family, peers, and community is ideal; however, building any type of connection will benefit them.
And don’t forget to maintain your own social connections. Modeling your resiliency is the most effective teaching tool you can use.