Dr Seuss and Resilience

In our most recent Boys’ Junior School Assemblies, we have discussed Resilience. I really enjoy Andrew Fuller’s definition of this critical characteristic: “Resilience is the happy knack of being able to bungy jump through life. When the inevitable pitfalls and setbacks of life occur, it is as if you have an elasticised rope around your middle that helps you to bounce back from hard times”

The phrase that we have used with our boys in our discussions is “Shake It Off”. In our latest Dr Seuss-ish type book, “Taylor the Resilient Donkey,” (not available at all good bookstores) we tell the story of Taylor, who fell down a well, only to have his mean farmer try to bury him with shovels of dirt. Instead of giving up and becoming despondent, Taylor decided to Shake Off the dirt, and step on it once it was on the ground. By shaking off and stepping up, Taylor freed himself from the well. He lesson of course being that rather than letting problems bury us or overwhelm us, we can Shake Them Off and overcome the challenge. The problems may be finding instrumental practice hard, or homework difficult, or a losing in a game, or just something not going as planned….whatever it is, by remembering ‘Shake It Off’,  we hope that our boys can practise resiliency. Dr Seuss describes it as “And I learnt there were troubles of more than one kind, some come from ahead, some come from behind. But I’ve bought a big bat, I’m already you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!”

A Kenny

 

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