Understanding Christ led by example for us, we model the behavior we teach, that is, we respond respectfully and kindly through words, modeling composure, cooperation, and compassion. Children make choices in their daily classroom life. We believe who children become is ultimately their responsibility, but is a result of the choices and decisions they make for themselves. Our role as early childhood educators is to guide children to making helpful choices.
A program by Dr. Becky Bailey called Conscious Discipline® produces amazing results in teaching children about choices, developing self-control, and personal responsibility for their behavior. Conflict in the classroom is viewed as an opportunity to teach responsibility for behavior. Learning occurs when children are able to see the connection between their behavior and the result of that behavior for themselves and those around them. Positive approaches to problem solving are used to motivate children to make helpful choices.
We know children’s learning is enhanced through a safe, nurturing environment. Research shows that connections with others actually aid in the development of neural connections in the brain. These connections of the brain are essential to learning. We are committed to developing children’s learning experiences through meaningful relationships with others. Teachers will create these connections by establishing the “School Family.”
Research also shows the brain functions optimally when the child feels safe. Each day teachers will tell children their job as the teacher is the “Safekeeper” and the children’s job is to help keep the classroom safe. Children will learn skills to help them relax and remain calm to handle conflict in a productive manner. They will learn to use the “Safe Place” when needed to help regain composure.
Children will be taught to use words to discuss differences and solve individual problems. They will learn to use their “big voice” and the “time machine” as conflict resolution tools. We will place emphasis on developing and using self-control as a tool to make helpful choices. Each conflict encounter will have a different need in resolving it depending on the child, the child’s skills, and context in which the situation happened. A rigid, scripted discipline plan is not applicable to all situations. This is why we will spend time on teaching and modeling for children the life-long skills they will need for effectively dealing with conflict and decision making in their lives. Additional information on Conscious Discipline can be found at www.ConsciousDiscipline.com.
Children are never subjected to discipline that is severe, humiliating, or frightening. Discipline is never associated with food, rest, or toileting. Any form of physical punishment is prohibited. Parents may not administer physical punishment in the building or on school grounds.