I am part of a group of friends who like to encourage and uplift women (and men) with experiences shared through our website and social media. While doing a short post about creating doors of opportunity, it came to me that this is exactly what we should be teaching our children and young people!
The effects of the current pandemic have impacted many of our children in ways that we ourselves did not experience growing up. I remember being a young teenager, that school life was pretty much my life! It was where I spent most of my waking hours, most of the week, for most of the year! There were the pressures and excitement of educational challenges to contend with, but also there was the social aspect. I looked forward to seeing my friends every day. I looked forward to my school family. I looked forward to completing coursework and having feedback on pieces I had worked hard for. I looked forward to exam time coming – going! I looked forward to the relief of having jumped that hurdle…
I cannot imagine what having that come to an abrupt end must feel like.
As adults and parents facing a number of new challenges, many of us are having to show resilience in order to survive in the current climate. Now is the time to teach our children the same! At first glance our situation may seem like doom and gloom, but how can we turn brick walls into doors of opportunity? Let’s take a look at just a few of the main factors surrounding the pandemic:
Loss of Income – Aside from looking into what claims we may be able to make, what could we do differently to meet a need and create a new source of income in this climate? I am part of many mums’ groups on social media and I cannot tell you how many people are looking for small items to send to friends, loved ones, our NHS superheroes. There has been a huge demand for pamper packs, wellbeing products, small cards and items that motivate or uplift, sweet boxes that can be posted, cakes, pocket hugs! The list goes on and on – and some of these items or services cost very little to create or setup. People have not stopped spending. What they are spending on has changed. If we really want to generate an income, we can find something that meets the current needs and get into it! As the saying goes – where there is a will, there is certainly a way!
Inability to See Loved Ones – Like many of us, this is something I have definitely been affected by. I have family that live just a few minutes drive from me, but my children and I can’t go to see them. I also miss my close circle of friends. However on a positive note, this has led me to make the most of technology. My family have had Easter dinner together online, I’ve had afternoon tea with my friends, taken part in weekly quiz nights with friends, hosted an online birthday party, done 4-way video calls with people across the globe and will soon be doing an escape room experience with my friends!
Home Schooling Our Children! – This is challenging for many – especially those with children aged above pre-school. On the plus side – this is something that the great majority of parents nationwide is experiencing! This common ground can promote more interaction with other parents, social network groups on home-schooling, WhatsApp groups for parents of children in the same class and also closer parent-teacher relationships. This is also the perfect opportunity for parents to really explore and observe the way that their child learns best. Children can learn the same piece of information but through different methods. Now that you are the “teacher” to some extent, now is an opportunity to see if your child takes in information best in a more visual, practical, theoretical or creative way and promote those learning methods! Of course, it’s unrealistic to think you can spend an unlimited amount of time on this, but there is certainly an opportunity to explore this, even if you are taking a few minutes out of each day to do this, while overseeing your child’s learning.
For older children and young people who may no longer have a curriculum to follow, this is an opportune time to get them to learn more practical, life skills, or to spend more time creating learning experiences around the things that they are passionate about.
Once we change our outlook on a situation and decide to seek for the positive, we are able to bounce-back from negativity to the point of creating opportunities where there were apparently none!
Once we have this mindset, we are able to pass this onto our children and young people. We can have conversations with them, identify their main struggles, fears and concerns in this pandemic and help them to address those. We can encourage them to make the most of this situation and turn it into a very positive experience. Instead of thinking about how things didn’t work out as planned, they can now be thinking about all of the things they can do with their new-found abundance of spare time! Things that can prepare them for the future and make them better rounded individuals. We can pass on the resilience!
Our YouthPreneur online courses for 10 – 14 year olds and 15 – 19 year olds are designed to promote and develop this mindset. As well as lessons and tasks on selling confidence, planning, profit calculation and more, we have a dedicated section on bounce-back-ability, as we believe this trait is necessary for success of any kind. The bounce-back-ability section covers perspective, problem solving, thinking outside of the box and dealing with rejection!
Our courses have been heavily discounted by more than 75% to make them more accessible during this period of restrictions and home schooling. For more information on The YouthPreneur online courses, including lesson previews and course content, click here.