Make sure he knows my hand is close through this rough part. Good call–he grabbed it. Let go when he indicates he’s ready to try independently again. Stand ready with the invitation next time.
Take note of his self-talk. He’s clearly anxious about approaching the water fall. Encourage those conversations about what to expect and how it might look and feel.
Occasionally grab him when he strays precariously close to the edge of the trail, and discuss what exactly is dangerous about it.
Let him run ahead when he feels confident & I can see the path is manageable (while eagerly announcing to passing hikers, “I very fast!”)
Navigate tricky terrain together, answering his questions about what happened to the trees, helping him try out new words like “avalanche.”
We stand ready for wherever the learning may lead; extending the invitation for support, setting an environment for exploration and thinking, responding to the needs and questions that arise, intervening when serious situations arise.
It seems teacher mode and connection-making simply never turns off,
not even especially on a hike with a 2 year-year old. Clearly, watching learning unfold will never stop being a thrill for me!
featured image: DeathToTheStockPhoto