The Struggle Is... OK in Early Childhood Education

emotions feelings respectfulcaregiving social/emotional health Jan 06, 2020

I don't want children to be happy.  Nope.  They need to be angry and sad and have some struggles.  Here is why...

I once was a parent where I wanted to make sure my children were happy.  I went out of my way to ensure they were happy.  I wanted to feel good about my adulting because they were happy.  Happy feels good to them, it feels even better to me, and that was the way I understood life to be.

As an adult who has learned a few things in life, I have found that we learn from mistakes.  We learn through leaning into struggle and embracing it to grow from it in some way.  And this is hard.  And it doesn't feel good and it can be ugly.  But we come out stronger on the other side.  

The same is true for struggle in childhood.  We need to allow our children to feel all the feelings.  Feel happy, mad, angry, struggle, giddy, vibrant, sad and content.  When we give children the time and space to feel all the feelings, we are respecting them as growing humans who need to work through little struggles (like someone not letting them play) in order to be able to withstand bigger struggles when they are older. 

Would you rather listen?  This blog post was created from one of Kristen's podcasts!

Listen here!

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