Kinder Kicks is so much more than a fun filled hour of fitness-centered activities for toddlers and moms. It is also a time to instill important values that will take root and grow in a little one’s forming personality. So, this month our Leadership Lions kids are learning all about having Courage from our featured character, Leadership Lion.
Why should we be working toward raising courageous children? Quite simply, courage is one of the most essential character traits a child needs to develop. Courage is like the fuel that drives us to chase our dreams and reach new milestones.
As young parents, you have either recently witnessed, or are soon to watch, your child learn to walk. A cruiser who is a wannabe toddler will try to let go of whatever they’re holding onto for support to take that first step, and invariably fall to the floor. She will get back up and try again and again and again. No matter how many times she goes down, she’ll get back up and go for it. That’s because children are naturally ambitious and eager to master new skills. The more opportunities a little one has to confront challenges, the more likely they’ll be to be willing to face them head on.
Whether your child is learning to crawl or learning to ride a bike, trying new foods or making new friends, facing the pediatrician or a test in school, courage is the propellant that gives children the ambition to achieve.
Courage comes in many forms. It can by physical – like jumping into a swimming pool. It can be emotional – like separating from mom to participate independently in Kinder Kicks class. And, it can be moral – like doing the right thing even when that’s not the easy choice. Having courage often feels difficult and can even be scary, but it is a fundamental element to instill in our children so they learn to lead and not follow, achieve their goals, and make good decisions.
This month, The Remarkables character Leadership Lion is teaching our 3-5 year olds about courage through a Life Lesson Story called The Yellow Belt Test. Jumping Joey is afraid to take his belt test to earn the next rank in his martial arts class, so Leadership Lion encourages him to be strong and not let his fears hold him back.
“Courage is a big word. It means to be brave about the things that scare you.” -Leadership Lion
You can teach your child to have courage in the following ways:
Encourage Independence: No one wants to be the dreaded “Helicopter Mom.” Let your child try new things, a little at a time, and praise their efforts.
Prepare for the Unknown: Most toddlers (and even a few grown ups) get worried in new situations. Whether it’s a medical procedure, heading to preschool, or even a trip to a place as seemingly wonderful as Disney World, can be overwhelming for your little one. Help your child prepare for the unknown by reading stories about the upcoming event. Go online and show pictures of where you will go or what you will see. And talk them through what they can expect to experience. Children who are well informed are much more courageous than those caught off-guard
Don’t Let Your Fears Become Your Child’s: Perhaps you have a fear of dogs or clowns (after all, clowns are creepy, right?). Make your best effort to not let your fears deny your child the opportunity to embrace friendly dogs and happy clowns.
Do you have a helpful tip for teaching courage? Post it in the comments below and have a Remarkable Day!