Monday, November 21, 2011

Helping Others Gives You a High!

Psychologists Robert Ornstein & Dr David Sobel describe what they call a ‘helpers high’, based on research that they carried out.
The euphoria that you experience when you help others close to you translates in a feeling of warmth, a frisson, the feeling you are full of energy but very calm at the same time. Every time you make a difference for a colleague or a child by creating kindness will have a wonderful impact on you as well. 

In the busy days of your teaching life take time to think about the ways in which you could create more kindness and joy in your environment. Challenge those who undermine this positive environment, for those who create the opposite are encouraging the secretion of cortisol and this is dangerous for young lives. Based on research it is clear that in the early stages of brain development raised cortisol levels can have long term negative effects as the brain is laying downing it's blueprint to build on the future growth.
Researchers compare the feeling you have when you help others, to what others feel after going for a jog - the runners high.

In both cases serotonin - the happy hormone - is secreted. Find ways to increase the opportunities to secrete serontonin in your place!!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Kindness Is Never Forgotten

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion”- Dalai Lama

Today I was engaged in a conversation with my son, who as a grown man in his thirties has applied to complete his teacher training. He was discussing the teachers who had left a lasting impression on him with their kindness or words of encouragement as he got older. There were only two teachers he mentioned, one was a male teacher in high school and the other was an early childhood teacher he had as a four year old. He could still remember her kindness and he said she was like a second Mum, how about that!

We must never forget the power we have to influence the children in our care and how we influence the way they perceive education and how they feel about their self worth which has lasting consequences for their adult lives. Are we instilling an image of these children as being capable and confident within our daily interactions and through assessment? Are we showing them kindness in all that we do with them?

Let us make a difference to all children in our care through kindness.