Lesson 10: Working With a Power-Seeking Child

The third primary human need is to feel independent and powerful. Children who consistently engage in power struggles are searching for ways to fill that need. Feeling powerless, they want to have more control over their lives.

Dr. William Adler, author of The Will to Power, claims that virtually every human interaction has within it elements of a power struggle. His observations ring true not only in regard to relationships between adults but also in regard to relationships between teachers and their students.

Teacher-student (and parent-child) power struggles are natural, normal, and appropriate as children pass through their natural developmental stages. As teachers, our role is to find safe, caring ways to help our children feel more powerful.

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