Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D,B.C.S.A.,DAPA.

Dr. Dan L. Edmunds, Ed.D,B.C.S.A.,DAPA.
e-mail: batushkad@yahoo.com

Wednesday, July 11, 2007


In collaborating with teens, there are a few themes that we work together towards:


Let me explain each of these concepts:

Community is important. Human beings cannot survive alone. We are all interconnected in some fashion. To forge into community means we become capable of understanding, of forging relationships, of creatively resolving dilemmas together, and finding what our common strengths and weaknesses are. A community is able to resolve conflicts, they are able to share in common goals, and they have concern and regard for one another.

It is my belief that there are levels of respect. Even those who we find undesirable do not need to be treated in a demeaning way. We can remain courteous even when we disagree. We can disagree without being disagreeable. However, the higher levels of respect is where one earns our admiration by what they model to us. As stated, this is earned, not immediately given. It is earned by modeling virtue.

Teens are all seeking autonomy. They are in the critical phase where they are separating themselves from childhood, wanting the things of aduthood, but not yet ready to assume the responsibility that comes with taking the step into the adult world. Therefore, it is necessary to emphasize with teens the importance of how freedom or autonomy is attached with responsibility. Many individuals confuse the concept of freedom with what would really be destructive chaos.

Empathy implies the Golden rule, that we seek to treat others as we desire to be treated. But it goes beyind this that we seek to understand and even embrace the experiences of others. When teens and other individuals are able to develop this important skill, we begin to gain better understanding and the ability to work through conflicts. We are able to understand more fully what it means to be part of the human family.

In establishing these objectives collaboratively with the teen we work on the following:

1. life map
2. listening partnerships
3. defining problems in terms of needs
4. setting one's own goals and priorities rather than 'rehashing' what others have stated to us
5. seeking to connect to the experience of others
6. understanding of our own experiences, and oru strengths and weaknesses.

No comments: