Teaching Resilience and the Art of Overcoming Adversity

Resilience is the capacity to bounce back quickly from difficulties. But can toughness be taught. The answer is, yes.  

Resilience, like tolerance and happiness and inspiration, are lifelong skills that can be taught at a young age. Or any age.  

Overcoming adversity is a trait everyone must come to grips with at one time or another. Teaching resilience means instilling lifelong resilience skills and it is more important than one might think. But first it is important to  

Great teachers are remembered not just for the knowledge they impart in different subjects, but for the way they encourage and lift their students’ achievement. It is not just about teaching specific subject matter, but addressing the important skills of living a fulfilling life. These skills of happiness, of inspiration, compassion, curiosity and resilience are essential for both the learner and the teacher. 

Why teaching resilience is important

Resilience is physical and mental. It can apply to an object or a person. It is about overcoming misfortune and not allowing it to defeat you. Examples can include such extremes as battle, but also more regular life misfortunes such as parents divorcing, bullying, physical injury in athletics or the death of a loved one. It can be as small as a bad grade. 

It’s a tough and sometimes scary world out there, but experts say that instead of sidestepping challenge, we can teach kids to cope positively, to learn and grow from adversity. We can arm our youth with skills of resilience, and these lessons can begin in the classroom 

How to teach resilience

Via a variety of resources, including resilience teaching games, educators can become acquainted with a teaching model that will help students become more resilient. 

People react to adversity, such as a poor grade, in different ways. Resilience teaching requires resilience activities for students for classroom use and developing a classroom resilience lesson plan.  

Part of this path is to read and study a variety of resources. Communicating with other teachers about the importance of resilience is also important. 

Children are so adaptable already that introducing the idea of resilience is much easier than teaching resilience to adults. 

There are many resources out there for helping build resilience in young children, but games are certainly one of the best ways. 

Learning the ABCs of resilience

As Edutopia.org points out, “students can adjust their own cognitive style by learning about the ABCs of resilience. The ABCs of resilience – adversity, beliefs, and consequence — is a simple yet power tool in cultivating self-awareness, a crucial element of resilient mindsets.  

This model was first proposed by psychologist Albert Ellis back in 1962, and it is still used as a foundational lesson in resilience.  

A resilience lesson plan

Developing a resilience lesson plan means first studying various types of issues, including emotional awareness and coping strategies. 

This might include studying how military veterans or first responders cope with such issues as PTSD. Understand how your role as the leader of the classroom has an impact on happiness and positivity. 

Once you have studied the proper techniques you can adapt a plan that fits the needs of your students, both as a whole and as individuals.  

A professional development course is essential in this learning process.