Adults With Learner Mind

Freechild Institute Adult Ally Toolkit

Learner mind is the experience of staying open, honest, humble and accepting of opportunities to learn, examine, critique and explore who we are, how we are and what we do in life. Adults with learner mind are committed to learning from young people as well as other adults.

Adult allies work to stretch themselves both personally and professionally. Whether you are a parent, teacher, youth worker or other adult who supports young people, you have to risk embarrassment, misunderstanding and even failure in order learn as much as you can from the people you serve. Having a learner’s mind helps us do that

Seeing through the differences between being stuck in a rut and moving through a groove, adult allies know every youth and every adult has more potential than they ever realize. Adult allies work to constantly unlock that potential, both in themselves and the young people we work with.

Adult allies know they will never “get it right,” and that’s a reality we gladly accept. The only way young people and adults can address new challenges that arise is by learning and growing ourselves to meet them head-on.

Ask Yourself…

  • Do I judge young people too quickly?
  • Do I assume things about young people without evidence, proof or experience?
  • Is it okay for me to become overwhelmed?
  • Do I ask young people for help when I need to?
  • What do young people teach me unexpectedly?
  • Can other adults teach me about myself?

Adult allies strive to keep learning, especially from young people themselves.

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