As I expressed in my last article, being an emotionally responsive parent is much more challenging than being an emotionally responsive teacher. Accepting my daughter’s range of emotions within our daily routines comes with its challenges, as does embracing the multiple facets of her personality. Encouraging Maeve to express her emotions in safe ways, as well as modeling how to treat others kindly and respectfully will produce far-reaching benefits. As I encourage my daughter’s social-emotional development, I am laying the groundwork for her success with peers, her self-confidence, her intellectual gains and her ability to problem-solve. The question remains, “How do I move this philosophy from the classroom into the home?”
Within my studies at Bank Street College of Education I was taught to think about the whole child. My education was rooted in the developmental-interaction approach. Development emphasizes shifts and change over time, which occurs at different rates for different individuals. Interaction refers to the child’s engagement with the world. Developmental-interaction refers to the ways in which cognition and emotion are interconnected in any teaching situation, while taking into account the relationships with others when co-constructing knowledge.