Resiliency — often known informally as grit — is one of the most important life skills kids can master. In some studies, grit matters more to long-term success than any other factor, including skills or intelligence.
Military children are often lauded for the resiliency that naturally comes along with multiple moves, new schools and the endless cycle of making friends, yet parents are often left searching for guidance on how to build and bolster that resiliency before it becomes necessary. How do you teach kids to face life’s challenges? How can you encourage them to keep going when life gets difficult?
These five picture books — all geared to the under-8 age group — aim to give both parents and kids a solid foundation in grit, before it’s needed.
Often touted as a life-changing mind-shift, helping kids move their thoughts from “I can’t do this” to “I can’t do this … yet” is an important step in building grit. This book takes a whimsical look at a magical ‘Yet’ who accompanies a small child in tackling some of life’s earliest and most-difficult challenges and helps to change the child’s thinking. Kids will love how the character learns to try, try again.
In this clever picture book, Lou wants to keep up with her friends, but when it comes to heights, she’s a bit skittish. Not even a pirate ship game at the top of the tree can lure her up — until her friends realize she’s scared and offer to help. Lou doesn’t conquer her fear on the first, second or even third try. She focuses on the power of “yet” and vows to keep practicing until she gets it.
This sweetly illustrated book reminds kids of the challenges they’ve already overcome — crawling, walking, learning to swim — and encourages discussion and reflection about how they achieved those milestones. Focused on building the skills kids need to face life’s tough times, author Sanders hopes to encourage parents too. By modeling self-esteem and self-reliance, parents can help pave a path for their kids toward those qualities in themselves. The book includes a discussion guide and ideas to take the text further for your kids, and questions on every page invite kids to reflect on how they’ve grown.
In this charmer of a story from legendary illustrator Patrick McDonnell, main character Louie skips along … until he encounters a jelly stain within the pages of his pristine book world. It only gets worse from there, and Louie learns some hard lessons about how to deal with life when it gets messy. This hilarious, heart-warming story will have kids laughing along, even as they learn to endure the unexpected mess-ups that make up everyone’s life.
With stories about big family changes for Fox that include themes such as comfort, trusting yourself, creativity and holding your worries, there’s something for every family within this short five-book board set. Military families can receive 10% off their Slumberkins’ orders. There’s an online component with resources and guides for caregivers available for additional support.