Emotionally ready to learn

Another extract from my book….

In order for children to achieve success at school they need a degree of healthy emotional and social development so that they are emotionally ready and able to learn. This involves being able to cope with success and failure and having the resilience to manage this, along with being able to ask for help when they need it. It includes having a sense of confidence and self-esteem, having self-reliance and independence appropriate to their age, having a positive self-image and a strong sense of self, along with being able to understand their own feelings and express them.

They need the stability and security to be able to manage change and unpredictability without it eroding their feelings of safety. They also need to have the social skills to develop, build and sustain relationships with both adults and children. How many children are equipped with all these skills to be able to do this?

The experience of being emotionally healthy is achieved by a combination of all the above skills together and not in isolation, in the same way as a child’s ability to hold a pencil is dependent on their hand–eye coordination and manipulative skills. It is the cumulative effect of the child’s experiences, learned behaviours and reactions to events that help define their sense of self and their ability to deal with situations both in and out of school. Children need information and explanations about what is happening in order for them to be able to make sense of their experiences.

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