I believe that I am a good mother. I really do. But after being in childcare a few years there are times I wish I can go do some things over. I am learning so many different ways to discipline children. It’s sad but I think that I am more open to learning because the children are not my own. But even though my children are older I still apply some of what I am learning into my daily life. You can teach an old dog new tricks.
Last week when I picked a young boy on my route he told me something that I was shocked by. He happens to be one of the last schools that I pick up at on my route. It’s only because of the many schools on my route. It has nothing to do with him. He tells me that someone at his school told him that I pick up at his school last because of him. I asked him what they meant by that. He said that the person told him that because he was bad that we pick up at his school late on purpose. When I tell you that hurt my heart I am no where near lying. I assured him that me coming late had nothing to do with him. He is not the only child that I pick up at that school. I told him whether he is there or not I pick up at the school at the same time no matter what. I don’t understand how someone can say such a thing to a child.
Now this child is a bit difficult at times but that doesn’t mean it’s okay for whoever said that to him was right to say it. Lets be honest I wouldn’t be on my best behavior if someone said something like that to me either. I am learning positive ways to deal with children who need a bunch of redirection. I am here to share them with you.
- Focus on the things that the child is doing right. : I do this with all kids not just children with behavioral issues. I applaud and praise them for the things that they are doing right. It can be as little as going in the classroom and sitting on the rug like I ask them to.
- Point out what other kids are doing right. : I notice that if I point out what other kids are doing or start praising other kids no matter the age all the children start to imitate the other child. You can use adults or animals as well.
- Ask them if what they are doing is right. : Sometimes I can ask a child if what they are doing is right. So like if little Sara is kicking the wall. I can be like “Sara, Do you think it is okay to kick the wall?” It will make the child stop and think about what they are doing. Then praise them for making the right decision.
- Give them choices. : This is very affective. I will tell the children that they could either stop their behavior and choose a consequence or they can do something positive. Then I praise them again for choosing the correct choice.
- Remind the child how good they have been doing up until they decided to make the wrong decision. : I find this works sometimes when all else fails. I will tell them liked the behavior they were showing before. Sometimes they will revert back to that behavior.
- Give the child a job: I find some kids like feeling important so sometimes a good way to distract them from behaviors is to give them a job.
I find that all of these work pretty well. Now they don’t work all the time. But I try not to be negative with them at all. Now I have slipped a few times. But I try to do my best to improve. I would never call them bad or tell them terrible things such as people come late to pick them up because of them.