Decision-Making Skills Develop Over Time

3BearsandGoldilocksYoung children are at the very beginning of learning decision-making skills. Our society assumes that children become “adults” and can make good decisions at age 18, but science shows that our brains haven’t fully matured until at least 25 years old. It’s no wonder that it is difficult for little children to see different sides of a situation and decide what is right or wrong. Their brains are just still young and growing.

When children can imagine multiple perspectives they start realizing how their actions affect themselves and others. They see how there are many ways to solve one problem. They see that there is not always one right way or one wrong way.

Many children’s books are based on the main character making big assumptions about how someone is going to act or what is going to happen. This can make a very funny story and give you the chance to talk about how we all see things little bit differently, which is what we all need to respect in each other.

“The 3 Bears and Goldilocks” by Margaret Willey and Heather M. Solomon. Oh Goldilocks! She finds the bear’s house messy, so cleans it. She finds the porridge full of beetles and she picks them out. She finally falls asleep on Baby Bear’s bed and then meets the whole bear family. Needless to say, she runs all the way home, very fast! Goldilocks can’t believe how the bear family lives, and the bears wonder why Goldilocks want to change the way they like things!

“Dandelion” by Don Freeman, author and illustrator of “Corduroy.” A lion is invited to a fancy party and decides to totally change his appearance by getting a haircut and new clothes. He doesn’t have a good time at the party though because none of his friends recognize him! This book, published in 1977, brings up a social dilemma we still face today. Should I change myself to be what other people want me to be? Or maybe true friends accept us just the way we are.

“Minerva Louise at School” by Janet Morgan Stoeke. Minerva Louise is a hen who bases all of her adventures on what she knows from living on a farm. On this excursion she goes to an elementary school and thinks the building is a big fancy barn. Cubbies are nesting boxes, pencils are hay, and rooms are stalls for animals. She innocently explores and likes this new place! This book is one in a series that is now out of print, but you can find used copies online or check out a Minerva Louise book at the library.

“Hooray for You! a Celebration of You-ness’” by Marianne Richmond. The colorful, bright, textured paintings of children celebrate individuality. The text is a rhyming message that each of us is unique with our own smile, hair, skin color, and way that we think. It’s okay to be different.

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by | January 25, 2013 · 11:35 am

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