Updated: Apr 28, 2022
“Fairy tales do not tell children that dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children that dragons can be killed.” G.K Chesterton
Children learn and form ideas by watching what is happening around them. They are curious creatures and natural philosophers. Having no preformed ideas about life, they seek to question and observe the behaviour of their role models to make sense of their world.
Placing ourselves in their shoes what do we make of our leaders and adults in 2022?
Can our students learn values we care greatly for whilst there is so much dysfunction?
After reading the Youth Mental Health in Aotearoa report from the University of Auckland, it comes as no surprise that there is a silent pandemic of mental morbidity infiltrating our youth population.
The report warns that there is an ‘unappreciated urgency’ around this issue.
What is causing this upward trend?
Determiners in the report suggest the data is pointing to these factors:
Social Media and Technology
Bleak Futures and Climate Change
What armour can we offer our young adults to protect themselves? Research in the report highlights factors such as cultural identity, resilience, and self-regulation, will be crucial tools in helping them deal with rapid change and life stress.
While the adults are distracted by the politics of the world, maybe we can encourage them to form reciprocal relationships with each other; encouraging them to notice the qualities such as kindness, joy, courage, resilience and respect within each other.
“Heroes take journeys, confront dragons, and discover the treasure of their true selves.” Carol Pearson
Use the power of narrative pedagogy to unpack what those qualities mean.
Use the narratives of the students' culture and identity to help them to experience and recreate what these qualities look like and sound like.
Use theorisation to analyse how these heroes play out through story.
Enable them to act by making use of the narrative pattern to help them make sense of their world.
Storytelling served us well throughout evolution, no matter where you come from it is part of our survival. Let’s teach our children to become dragon slayers and reverse this formidable trend.
FREE tools to help students deal with self-regulation and resilience are available here on our resources and tips page. (Be quick though as on May 4th these free tools will be archived into the vaults of Werewere School)
The PULSE tool is designed to aid self regulation.
The SPOONFUL OF SUGAR tool helps teachers to facilitate challenging questions and discourse.
The HEROES OF OUR STORY tool will help them find out that children can be role models and dragon slayers too!
BATTLING DRAGONS tool to see how stories from the past can help give us armour in the future.
- begin their hero journey today.