The Importance of Teaching Children to Think!


shutterstock 955716821Recently I have been reading a very interesting book called Factfulness, by Hans Rosling, Professor of Global Health. The byline – Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World and Why Things are Better than You Think – describes in a nutshell what the book is about. In it, Professor Rosling explains how everyone, from factory workers to university professors, United Nations officials, world bankers and aid agency workers, consistently view the world as a worse place than it is.

When asked about global trends in health, education, prosperity, child deaths, disasters and other indicators of wellbeing, we consistently get it wrong due to systematic biases in our thinking. The result is pessimism and a lot of needless worry. This is not to say there is nothing to be concerned about as there clearly are concerns about issues such as climate change, but when we over-emphasize the bad and ignore the improving, we open ourselves up to anxiety and defeatism.

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Protective Factors in Children's Mental Health - Part 3

guitar classical guitar acoustic guitar electric guitarThe fourth factor I want to talk about here is something Vijay Yogendra called Innateness.  Vijay felt that “Each child comes with a gift, and it is up to us (parents and teachers) to unwrap it!”

Innateness embraces a child’s talents and strengths but it is more than that. It is that unique quality a child possesses that when they can connect with it inwardly and express it outwardly, gives them a great sense of peace and contentment and fulfilment. Children’s special interests and excellence may not be accessible in their educational environment, so parents may need to look further afield to provide children with these enriching opportunities.

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Protective Factors for Children's Mental Health - Part 2

dad n daughterThe second factor important in helping children to have good mental health is the quality of our relationship with them. The special bond we have with our children works to our advantage and to our disadvantage at times. Our physical and emotional habits, our mannerisms, our preferences in food and fashion are all absorbed by the child as are our fears, worries, moods and crankiness. Children will copy our negative tendencies with the same ease as they do our good qualities. And this is all without words!

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