Letter from the Director!

Did you know there are 7 Essential Life Skills that everyone needs to be a successful adult?

Research has shown that these essential life skills can be taught and improved with support and practice, even with young children. Children need this skill to achieve goals, especially in a world filled with distractions and information overload. This includes paying attention, exercising self-control, remembering the rules, and thinking flexibility. It is never too early—or too late—to promote them.

Focus is the foundational skill to all other life skills.

If we find it difficult to stay focused, imagine what it might be like for the children.

Children use their ability to focus when they:

  • Play games that involve paying attention to details, like I Spy.

  • Put on their socks, shoes, or other clothing.

  • Use scissors, a paintbrush, or another tool in art experiences.

Perspective Taking is the second essential skill.

This involves understanding what others think and feel and forms the basis for children’s understanding of the intentions of parents, teachers, and friends. Children with this skill are less likely to get involved in conflicts.

Skill number three is Communicating.

Much more than understanding language, reading, writing, and speaking, communicating is the skill of determining what one wants to communicate and realizing how it will be understood by others. It is the skill teachers and employers feel is most lacking today.

Making Connections is skill number four.

This Life Skill is at the heart of learning: figuring out what is the same, what is different, and sorting them into categories. Making unusual connections is at the core of creativity and moves children beyond knowing information to using information well.

Essential skill number five is Critical Thinking. This skill helps children analyze and evaluate information to guide their beliefs, decisions, and actions. Children need critical thinking to make sense of the world around them and to solve problems.

The Ability to Take on Challenges is the sixth skill. Children who take on challenges instead of avoiding or simply coping with them achieve better in school and in life.

The final skill needed for successful development is Self-Directed, Engaged Learning. By setting goals and strategies for learning, children become attuned and better prepared to change as the world changes. This helps children foster their innate curiosity to learn and helps them realize their potential.

It is important that as a team, parents as well as teachers do our best to develop all these skills in our children at the earliest age possible.

Thank you for allowing us to be a part of such an important task.


Ivy Academy West

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