Tuesday, August 28, 2007

From Known to Unknown

Think about it. We struggle when we go from the known, what is comfortable, to the unknown. We often resist change. We seek the reassurance we feel in our comfort zones and sometimes go kicking and screaming into new experiences.

I got to thinking about this today because I am moving into some unfamiliar territory in some areas of my life. This can be scary and unsettling, even though I have had many previous opportunities to gain skills for coping and growing through these experiences.

So why do we give kids such a hard time for their understandable defiance when we ask them to do something new. New is a strange food. New is an unfamiliar social experience. New is a person they don't know. New is a place they have never been before. New is a classroom full of kids. We have things we resist, too.

Some children are born adventurers. In fact, we made need to hold on, just a little, and supervise closely so they don't get hurt. Others need our encouragement to try new things. Pushing them doesn't help. Support and reassurance does. Eventually new experiences become part of the everyday and may even become something that can be counted on. They become known to us.

We take this passage from the known to the unknown many times in our lives. Let us remember the challenges and resistances that the venture into the unknown can bring. With this awareness, we can encourage children to move forward into new possibilities with our support and understanding.

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