When we learn that something is wrong, whatever it might be, the natural thing to do is to focus on the limitation, on what the child can’t do, or on what s/he is doing wrong, and then we try to conquer, stop, or otherwise overcome it. We want to solve the problem, and fix the child so s/he will sit up, talk, read, write, relate to others, etc.
The desire to fix what is broken or malfunctioning is tremendously important and useful. There are times when fixing is exactly the right approach; for example, when doctors need to surgically repair a hole in the heart or when an antibiotic is used to combat an infection. When they’re necessary and when appropriate treatment is available, those fixes need to be carried out.
At the same time, it is important to understand that fixing is simply one way of approaching problems. It has great limitations and can at times even be counterproductive.
The 9 Essentials are intended to guide us beyond the limits of the fixing approach, providing new opportunities for the child’s own brain to create the solutions it requires.
Children Are Works In Progress with Remarkable Potential
Children are living, feeling, and experiencing beings; works in progress—growing and evolving; in the process of figuring out and continuously forming the abilities to move, think, understand themselves, and relate to the world around them.
At the center of all this unfolding potential of your child is that most remarkable of all organs, the brain. To make full use of the brain’s remarkable potentials, we need to make a shift in our thinking, away from the fixing paradigm. We need to know how to focus our attention on what we can do to awaken and strengthen the capacities of the child’s brain to do its job well.
Making the Transition from Fixing to Connecting
To be truly helpful to the child with special needs, we need to back off from trying to make the child do what s/he can’t do. We need to more fully recognize the fundamental role the child’s brain plays in learning and refining new skills. The brain has the ability to figure itself out and, amazingly, to create successful solutions to problems.
No matter how much we may want to help, and no matter what our expertise, we are 100% dependent on the child’s brain to make the necessary changes.
Through the 9 Essentials, we move quickly beyond the limitations of the fixing paradigm to help the child’s brain do its job better, providing the underlying process by which all skills and all learning emerge.
Get Your Child’s Brain Working Brilliantly
The 9 Essentials are tools for you to feel, see, notice, and create; more important, they will increase your own capacity to connect with and work with your child, whatever his or her special needs may be.
The purpose of connecting with your child through the 9 Essentials is about providing your child with the greatest opportunity to develop real skills and a strong sense of self, to feel good about him/herself and to have the ability to continue to learn and grow, with a genuine sense of accomplishment and pride.
The 9 Essentials will get your child’s brain working brilliantly.
NOTE: These excerpts are taken from Kids Beyond Limits (pages 17-25).