The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, who strives valiantly; . . . who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, . . .who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best, knows the triumph of high achievement; and who, at the worst, if he fails . . . .at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls . . . who know neither victory nor defeat.

Theodore Roosevelt

It’s happened again, a crisis over which we have no control. Our little children observe and sense. They may even ask. It’s another of those big life questions that catch us unawares, and maybe we don’t really know how we’re going to cope with it ourselves. There’s a vague feeling that no matter what we do, catastrophe happens beyond our control. The best way for us to communicate positive outlook and confidence in our ability to deal with what presents itself is to talk with our children. “With” is the operative word here. For our very young children, it means being aware that there may be feelings for which they don’t have words.

Their feelings may come from anywhere — your worried response to a news story, an angry reaction to a traffic incident, spending the weekend with dad and his girlfriend, low blood sugar, something a teacher said. When we bring events into the light in a caring way, our children can be secure enough to deal with them. Explore your children’s ideas. They may not have a realistic grasp of the actual danger of the situation. Most of us think a disaster will happen again, regardless of actual possibility. Be positive and be calm. Research shows that when parents are happy and calm, their children are happy and calm.

We can give our children coping mechanisms so they have the confidence that they can deal with whatever comes along. Giving your children power can help, too. A flashlight beside their bed helps in case they get scared. Knowing their phone numbers, their addresses, and their first and last names can give children confidence. Make sure your children know a plan. You’ll want plans for how to evacuate if you have a fire at home, how to find a friendly grandmother if they get lost at the mall, how to go away if a school mate is teasing them. Talk about how your family prepares for a hurricane, how you do preventive maintenance on your car, and how you buy groceries for the week. Make sure you have lots of confidence, lots of love, and lots of laughter.


For Your Information

Classroom Seminars – This is an opportunity for you to meet other parents who have chosen this school for their child, and for you all to hear what you can expect for the classes in this new school year. The Infant class will have their seminar on Tuesday September 12, the Toddler class seminar will be Wednesday September 13, and the primary class seminar will be Thursday September 14. Please update your calendar and plan for an information session with your child’s teacher

Vanishing Water – The science experiment this week is on where does water go when it goes away. The children will be watching water evaporate from two jars, one with the lid on. The one with the lid off will have the water go into the air. In the one with the lid on, the water will stay in the jar. Explore this concept with your child as you go about your affairs.

About Values – How coincidental that this week we’ll be talking about deserts, those places that don’t have enough water. The value will be humility, in which we’ve just had a big lesson. Maybe gratitude is a large part of that also. As our editorial reminds us, we’re the ones our little ones look to for how to manage ourselves. So far, we seem to be doing pretty good.