Teach to Resist is parenting and teaching as resistance as much as it is teaching kids to resist.
Some might say, "Teach to resist? I get enough resistance from my kids already!"
But I am not talking about that sort of resistance. I am talking about reflecting on our parenting and teaching, our goals and aims, and how the ways we practice, the methods and tactics we employ, may be in need of interruption.
I am talking about resisting what doesn't work. Rather than focusing most of our energy on getting our kids to do what we want them to do, I propose we choose connection over compliance, humanization over dehumanization, unconditional love over a relationship contingent on certain behaviours.
When we reflect, and consider the disconnection between our beliefs about parenting/teaching and our actions, we are called to resist.
Teach to Resist is for caregivers of children; those who are parents, who support parents, who are stepping into a parenting role, and those who take care of other people’s children, those who teach in formal or informal settings, educators, camp counsellors, or anyone who is interested in how these littler people can come to be actualised.
Because that is what we all want for our kids: we want them to have the freedom to become fully human. We want them to understand their freedom and the freedoms of others. The dominant teaching and parenting practices, even the more progressive ones, undermine this goal and circumvent our efforts to connect and to unconditionally love.
Teach to Resist was created in the hope of empowering parents and teachers, but also to provide a message of encouragement. It may be startling or unsettling but also transformative to start thinking about why you do what you do, why you say what you say, and how what you do/say effects what you believe when it comes to your relationships with young people and all people.
Teach to Resist makes the effort to promote our long-term goals for our kids, or the children we care for and teach, while pointing out the ways in which we may be distracted by the question of 'How do I get the kids to do what I want them to do?"
It is a journey in the direction of empowerment and humanisation for all. Because parenting and teaching are always shifting and changing as kids grow and we grow with them, this journey is without a particular destination in mind but rather a commitment to reflection.
It is a struggle to move beyond complacency, to lean into uncertainty and vulnerability, and to critically question some of the narratives we have come to depend on. Teach to Resist is about asking how we, as caregivers and human beings, can create deeper connections with children, each other, and the world.