Today was another one of those days we had the opportunity to work on conscious discipline all day . Helping children regulate and make good choices is the most important part of our job. It is also the hardest part of our job. It can be exhausting and rewarding at the same time. We got to nothing … nada.. on our lesson plans today. But let me tell you what we did. I heard children offering to help friends do a calm down technique. I saw children make good choices when presented with two options. I saw melt downs that ended in a smile. I can tell you that one of the most important things that I have learned from conscious discipline is that when I think it isnt working on a child , it is working on me. I can use it myself. I can take a deep breath and QTIP. Quit Taking it Personally. All children are here to learn whether it be something academic like ABC’s or the incredibly important kindergarten readiness skills of social readiness. Once we get the social side of our preschool family going the right direction the other learning will come easy.
I was up a lot of the night thinking about ways I can change our environment to make the flow better. We moved the block area downstairs this year so it could be observed a little closer. It seems to be a very busy area and where much conflict occurs. We do limit the number of children in that center but still there are problems like children walking through and causing structures to fall down and children not wanting to wait their turn and barging into others play. Some of the smaller kids like to play with the larger blocks and the cars and planes more than the wooden block set. Perhaps making them two areas is the answer. So here, chase a rabbit with me. It isnt as easy as just saying we will move it. When moving the one block shelf across the room according to our environmental ratings scale we have to make sure that it isnt in a traffic area. That means the water fountain will have to be moved. Also, blocks is generally a ” louder ” center and now it is within feet of our calm down spot which by ECCRS is required to be in a quiet area . Do you see the struggle ? I will continue to work on this tonight and hopefully find the right fit.
So, since I prefer to be Mary Poppins instead of Debbie Downer I will close with a few pictures we took today that will remind you that all day every day isnt hard. We actually do smile and have fun.