The Courage of the Wall

a guest post by
Rebecca Sadler

The courage to choose to try, and then try again. The courage to trust someone when they say, “now push up on that bent leg” and most importantly the courage to ask for help when you need it. Their bodies were made for this, we can have the courage to trust them!

Today’s post was written by the talented Rebecca who works on the Yellow Side with the younger children. This moment, and many others like it, are why I’m so grateful to work here…and have my children come here. During this Teacher Appreciation Week I’d like to thank the thoughtful, reflective and nurturing educators I have the privilege to work with. Their dedication to supporting families, the care they show the children (even when the camera isn’t there to capture it) makes this a safe, joyful and growthful place to be. It is a gift to be able to fully trust leaving your children in someone else’s hands, and these people are more than just capable…they are an extension of family, the very soul of our school.

The Courage of the Wall

Earlier this week Chef Sean shared these photos of a moment out in our backyard. After taking some time to reflect I wanted to share some thoughts about this exchange between Lillian and myself.

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It was morning and everyone was outside. I was in the sandbox by the rock climbing wall. I looked up amid paper airplanes being launched into the air and saw Lillian on the wall. Her body language showed me that she was searching for stability; her arms and legs were tucked in close to her body, her right foot searching for a foothold. I wondered as I approached, “How I could best support her?” but also “How I could assist without helping too much.”

I chose to talk her through what her body was doing, and what the next step in the process was. I didn’t physically assist her because I trusted her ability. Often times you may hear from your child, “I can’t do it.” There are many reasons why a person might feel this way. When you take a closer look into how a caregiver or parent could contribute to this attitude you might see something that you didn’t notice before.

As a caregiver it can be really difficult because we naturally want to help, but it is imperative to their growth to not underestimate a child’s ability. When it’s appropriate, instead of rushing to their aid, wait and see what your child is capable of doing on their own. I think the best way we can help in those moments is by being available and letting them know, “I’m right here, and I wont let you fall.”

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By allowing Lillian to own that moment where she brought her own body up, we can see how it can organically help, and give a person the kind of tools to construct an attitude that says, “I can do it!” It all happens when you trust them.

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