Making Wise Decisions "Even one small drop can make a ripple in the water, and one small decision can affect your life in the simplest way."
Decisions! The values you are teaching, and the skills your child is learning, come together in the choices she/he makes! Every day, your child is making choices. From deciding what to say and how to act, to finding best steps to navigate a complicated friendship conflict, your child's waking hours are full of choices and decisions.
Thinking is our strength as humans! Clear steps of thinking can lead to healthy and effective decisions and choices - wise decisions! Support your child in considering this series of steps to arrive at a decision. Practicing this process today is a vital rehearsal of lifelong decision-making skills, and will help your child to respond wisely, rather than react without thoughtful consideration. What -> Ideas -> Select -> Evaluate = WISE
A wise decision...
Has effective, ethical consequences!
Lets you be your genuine self, not pretending to be what you are not!
Supports the goals you had for the situation - even if some compromise is involved!
No one is hurt by the decision!
Adapted from the Michigan Model for Health
TABLE TALK ... Try it with your family! Whenever you gather your family, perhaps at the dinner table, engage everyone in brainstorming solutions to dilemmas. Talk about one of our ideas below, or pose some of your own. You may turn one of your child's current quandaries into a lively, stimulating sharing of thoughts, a practice of the steps in decision-making, and may support your child in arriving at a wise plan of action!
Wise Decisions: What -> Ideas -> Select -> Evaluate Try it out with these dilemmas:
What Do You Think?: Being New A new student joined your grade this week. Other students were nice to him for the first few days, but now kids are ignoring, or even starting to talk about him behind his back and laugh. He didn't know how to do the math problems yet, he didn't contribute ideas to his science small group, and he got confused about the rules of soccer in P.E. When kids talked to him on the first day, he looked down and didn't have much to say. Now kids have stopped going up to him, aren't inviting him to their lunch table, are walking right by him at recess, and are talking unkindly about him. You feel uncomfortable about what you are hearing and what's happening, but you feel that you may lose friends if you disagree, or that your buddies may even start talking negatively about you. What will you do? More to ponder: Why would someone look down or not have much to say? Put yourself in this student's shoes. How would you feel if this happened to you? What do you think it would be like to be new at school, or at a club, team, etc.?
What Do You Think?: Social Media Some kids are talking about a social media website that "everyone is on." Your friends tell you that you have to join it! After school, you go to the website, but see that it is open to people who are 13 or older. You are not 13. To join, you would have to enter a false age. "Why do they have these age restrictions?!" you ask yourself. What will you do? More to ponder: Why do social media sites have age restrictions? Why do you think your friends decided to join?
What Do You Think?: Famous Quote "If you think you can or you think you can't, either way, you'll be right." -Henry Ford This is a famous and often-repeated quote from Henry Ford. What do you know about Henry Ford? What do you think this quote means? How does it relate to you?
"Strong people don’t put others down. They lift them up." - Michael Watson