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InBrief: Resilience Series

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Reducing the effects of significant adversity on young children’s healthy development is critical to the progress and prosperity of any society. Yet not all children experience lasting harm as a result of adverse early experiences. Some may demonstrate “resilience,” or an adaptive response to serious hardship. A better understanding of why some children do well despite early adversity is important because it can help us design policies and programs that help more children reach their full potential. These three videos provide an overview of why resilience matters, how it develops, and how to strengthen it in children.

  1. InBrief: What is Resilience?

    The science of resilience can help us understand why some children do well despite serious adversity. Resilience is a combination of protective factors that enable people to adapt in the face of serious hardship, and is essential to ensuring that children who experience adversity can still become healthy, productive citizens. Watch this video to learn about the fundamentals of resilience, which is built through interactions between children and their environments.

  2. InBrief: The Science of Resilience

    One way to understand the development of resilience is to picture a balance scale or seesaw. Protective experiences and adaptive skills on one side counterbalance significant adversity on the other. Watch this video to visualize the science of resilience, and see how genes and experience interact to produce positive outcomes for children.

  3. InBrief: How Resilience Is Built

    Children are not born with resilience, which is produced through the interaction of biological systems and protective factors in the social environment. The active ingredients in building resilience are supportive relationships with parents, coaches, teachers, caregivers, and other adults in the community. Watch this video to learn how responsive exchanges with adults help children build the skills they need to manage stress and cope with adversity.

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