Resist getting in power struggles with children . It’s not about me being right… It’s about helping the child begin to make choices on their own that are healthy and wise. Instead of yelling “get dressed and get dressed now” give them choices – all of which have your end goal in mind. Today we read a book about Shubert who had to make some choices.
Shubert was having a hard time getting dressed. His mom said “ do you want to wear the blue shirt or the red shirt ?”
“Do you want to wear the pants with the pockets on the front or the pockets on the back ?”
Wait this might look at school is instead of pick up all the blocks it might be pick up the blue box or pick up the Red blocks?”
It might be “would you like to walk to the gate holding my hand or would you like to walk by yourself ?”
Or it could be “would you like to put your plate in the trash first or your cup first ?”
Some may look at this as manipulation but it really is teaching children how to make choices. There is not a third option. You give them two options and if they don’t choose one you parrot your choices. ( say it again ) . If after the third time they still have not made a choice you say… “You’re having a hard time choosing I will choose for you.”The natural consequence of that is that they might not get to do exactly what they wanted to do in their way.
You can even make the choices fun… You are at the splash pad and it’s about time to leave. You have given a 10 minute warning. You have given a two minute warning. You’ve done everything you know to do to set your child up for success. Still – when it’s time to leave you feel a meltdown coming on. Instead of yelling get in the car… You say something like would you like to swim like a fish to the car but would you like to hop like a bunny to the car ? Sounds funny but usually it works 🤷🏻♀️
I cant wait to hear if these techniques work for you. They work for me!
We also did a little mark making today with Chalks . These bring back such good memories for me. My mom used to make bulletin board pieces with chalk and blend the edges. I remember it like it was yesterday. I think the kids enjoyed it.
Remember our goal is not a product but the process.
Also, exciting!! As a teacher that follows the Reggio Philosophy I try to look for trends and what the children are interested in. If you look at the last few days there has been lots of tinkering with tools. All over the playground they are using screwdrivers and taking screws out and putting them back in. I’m wondering what the fascination is. Is it the actual motion that they are enjoying? Is it the power of using a material they don’t usually have access to?
I will continue to watch but I feel a project coming. ❤️