Have you ever observed your child get frustrated when trying to complete something that just isn’t working? What was their reaction? Did they give up or keep adjusting until they completed what they were working on? If you answered the later, well then that’s a clear sign of problem solving at its best. I know first hand from experiences in the classroom to my own personal experiences that problem solving is a powerful skill/tool that can change our lives for the better. It’s a skill that both children and adults need and should use.
Our young learners need problem solving skills to make decisions, appropriately socialize during certain activities, figure out solutions during situations they dislike, solve their own problems and so much more. However, over the course of my 18 year teaching career I’ve observed too many children who lack problem solving skills and ultimately they become the “problem child” in a class. These children, unfortunately are given labels like “not a good listener”, “rude child”, “class clown” and “special child”. Oh and the label list goes on and on.
I wish I could solve the problems for young children of the world, but unfortunately I can’t. I know I can do my part by teaching the adults, in the lives of children, how to give their children the problem solving tools they need to succeed. Here are four steps to guide your children when they are in the process of problem solving:
1. Identify the problem
2. Find Solutions
3. Think of solution outcomes
4. Try a solution
Watch my throw back live Video below where I breakdown the 4 steps.
Remember the best way young children learn is by doing.
It’s important they experience what they are learning. However, learning by adult models is just as important. One way to model problem solving skills is through role play, such as a puppet show. So, mom and dad put on your creativity hats and put on a show with a problem solving scenario.
I hope this information was helpful. How do you teach problem solving skills to your young learner? Share in the comment section below.
Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are my own. I advocate for children everyday. My purpose in life is to enhance the lives of children world-wide.