Mila came in today very upset. Her routine has changed and it’s hard. Her papi is the center of her world and he has taken care of her since she was a baby. If you see his posts on FB you would see that she too.. is the center of his world. There’s nothing wrong with that ! Thankfully, the transition to school wasn’t too hard in the fall . But since Christmas , baby brother is going to Papi’s and they have to drop him off first before school . Mila gets to watch her baby brother be left with HER Papi every day now. It’s hard. She’s angry. She’s hurt. She has every right to be. Today was especially tough. After getting her in the door and getting mom out before she cried I just held Mila. ” Its hard. You love your Papi. You want to stay with him. You are sad. I understand. You are safe. You are loved. ”
Sometimes we want to discount the emotions of our littles. They are real. They are big. Sometimes they.. like us.. just need someone to say ” I get it. ”
After Mila calmed down some. ( Maybe 5 minutes ) I offered to let her go to the calm down center. While there Gracie ( our lotion latherer for the week ) joined her and sung the song ” Bye Bye Crankies Bye Bye crankies. Bye Bye Crankies its time to go goodbye. ) It helped. We wished her well and within a few minutes she was ready to join us for breakfast.
During breakfast I took the opportunity to spend some one on one time with Mila. I asked her if she seen any of the video’s her Papi had made with him singing. I found one and we watched it together. Though it was in spanish I think it was a Christian song . ( I gather this from the caption . ) We were quiet. We listened. A few of the kids gathered around and Mila said ” No, my Papi. ” She is having to share him with her little brother and she was NOT planning on sharing him with her friends here too.
After breakfast Mila joined us for family time and the rest of the day was a normal day for her. I must take into consideration that this is not the end of the story. One day of understanding and conversation will not change this . There are other things in motion to help Mila through this transition of leaving her brother with her Papi . I printed the picture at the top in an 8×10 for her cubby. When she is sad she can go to her cubby and look at the picture or take it with her to the calm down center. I have invited her Papi to our little school. If he is able to come Mila will see that two important parts of her world can come together. She will see that we love her Papi and he loves us too. I have a few other ideas like a book that reminds her the routine of when she will see Papi again and maybe even a note from her Papi we can read at school.
This is what conscious discipline does to change a classroom. The most important job we have is to help children learn to manage their big emotions. Yes, it was a busy time. It might have been easier and more traditional to say ” Suck it up Butter cup. You will see Papi soon. Go play. ” More importantly than ABC’s or 123’s we have the opportunity to coach preschool children through life and emotions like anger and disappointment. What a great disservice it would be if we neglected their feelings. I think of times in the past that I wasn’t on my CD game and it makes me sad for the signal I gave children that were struggling .
Conscious Discipline is a game changer. ( Story shared with Mila’s mom’s permission. )
One of the activities we did today was an alphabet parking lot. The children drove the cars around the lot to spell their name .
As we played one of the girls said the road looks like hair ! Hmm… So after the activity we turned the road into a beautiful girl that the children enjoyed coloring .
Another game we played today was with a number line. The car was placed in the cardboard tube and rolled down onto the number line. Which number do you think it will land on ? Which number did it land on ?
It was a good day .