A Tale of Two Tots
“You can’t always get what you want,” sang the Rolling Stones. “But if you try sometime, you might find … you get what you need.”
As a school teacher, if I could name just two things that today’s children “lack” (besides adequate time outside in nature, which might come in a close third) it would be the perseverance to keep going … and the resiliency to bounce back from things when they go badly. There may be no two character traits more important toward living a meaningful and happy life.
Like virtually everything that parents and caregivers teach children, we do it best by our “example”. Not by our words. Children learn from what they see us “do”, not from what they hear us “say” to do.
When I find a child who lacks the qualities of perseverance and resiliency, it worries me far, far more than whatever they may score on their academic tests (which are, by the way, pretty much meaningless data for predicting a meaningful and happy life - regardless of what the ivory tower folks making law for Tennessee public education are claiming about 3rd grade reading scores right now - which would make a fine prime topic for an upcoming column).
For now, I would like to tell you a bit about two young children whom I once taught.