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‘I did it!’: Valuing resilience in the Early Years

Written by: Verity Downing
8 min read
Verity Downing, Early Years Practitioner and Doctoral researcher, UK Practicing resilience is an ongoing and ever-changing life project, yet, by the time students leave the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and progress to Key Stage 1, it is expected that they will be ‘confident to try new activities and show independence, resilience and perseverance’ (Early Education, 2021, p. 61). For many children, their initial experience of an EYFS setting will represent their first encounter with a substantial challenge, thus, during this time, the foundations of resilience are formed, tested and developed. Fostering resilience (‘the capacity to cope with, adapt to, and recover from setbacks or adversity’; Early Education, 2021, p. 121) in children is not to disregard valid emotions, belittle distress or overlook disappointment; it is to acknowledge that young children’s inherent tenacity and courage should be afforded due respect, and that they are capable of becoming learners who a

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