To parents, educators, and other concerned adults out there, what key gems of advice would you
give a child regarding failure? Would you instruct him/her to avoid failure and that failure is an impediment to achieving and attaining future success, particularly in education and career?
The highest form of teaching is by example. Telling a child something is completely meaningless if it doesn't match up with what you're demonstrating in your daily life.
I think the key elements of success are:
- Open mindedness (if that's a word)
Of all of those, perseverance may be the most important. That's what helps you stay honest, fair, and open-minded.
Avoiding failure shouldn't be the primary goal. That could encourage kids to stay safe and never take a chance. Instead, the goal should be to always learn from your experiences. If you do something that just doesn't work out, but you LEARN from it, it's not really a failure.
I would encourage a child not to see education or career in terms of success or failure, but encourage personal growth through what ever path is chosen, service to others, and discovery of personal strengths and talents. In attempting to avoid failure, you can end up avoiding success, too.
Is the failure in the picture you included the loser who clearly doesn't know how to deal with children?
I'd pretty much tell most children who fail in school that there's a good chance that some adult (or a number of adults) is failing that child in some way. Much of the time parents don't understand what's wrong FOR the child (which is different from "WITH" the child). Children generally WANT to succeed, and if they don't there's a reason (and much of the time it isn't something wrong "with" them. The trouble can be that even if a child is asked what's wrong he may not know. Sometimes the problem may be at home. Much of the time, I believe, it is within the school. Sometimes it's both.
My children are grown now; but all I think, with some of the ways I see people doing things with regard to children and education, is "good luck" to any child out there who, at best, has adults who think that anything other than all A's in school is "failure" and, at worst, must deal with adults who then blame the child for any "failure" (regardless of what type of failure it is or what degree of failure is involved).
It's not wonder we have so many angry twenty-something's these days either being medicated for "depression" and/or for mental-health problems that would never have happened (IF they REALLY "happened" at all) because some two-, five-, or thirteen-year-old had a bunch of adults who should have understood them better looking for what's wrong WITH him, rather than FOR him.
There's no doubt that in life there will always be times when people have one or another kind of failure. If those adults are well adjusted they deal with one way or another. For children, however, I, personally, lthink the word, "failure", should never be used on them or about them.
In any case, I look at the guy in that picture you posted here and think "what a jerk" and "what a loser". I know the picture is make-believe, but if it weren't: Hopefully, that child will grow up to know what kind of failure/loser/jerk NOT to be. Hopefully, too, he won't find himself on mental-health medications (or needing them) before he does.
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