Saturday, November 1, 2008

Odd Teaching Tip

A very wise teacher once told me, "If you are frustrated with a trouble- maker student, the first thing you need to do is change your attitude towards the student." This is a very wise saying, especially in the daycare industry. I have a child in my room who is very high maintenance. He needs so much attention and so many hugs. This in and of itself isn't a bad thing, however, it can get hard when diapers need to be changed, snacks and lunches need to be put out, general cleaning of the room needs to happen, and the other children need attention as well. It can be very frustrating when the innocent behavior turns mischievous and the priorities of what needs to happen *now* are drastically changed.

It is equally hard to take a deep breath, take a step back, and see how you can incorporate what you are doing into something that the child can do with you to fill the need of attention the child has. It's so easy to punish and assume the situation is over instead of discipline followed by a change in action for the adult as well as the child. Granted, there are some things that cannot use a "helper". It's impossible to have a child help change another child's diaper, but by the same token, I can't expect the child to sit through fifteen minutes of diaper changes, either. Changes and compromises must be made to meet the needs of everyone in the room.

As I have started to do this, both change how I feel towards the child and how I deal with the child, I have found my days to be better and happier. The child is also happier and better when it comes to learning how to act in a social setting. Improvements have been made on both sides! It's been amazing to watch.

In our society, compromise isn't a word we like to use all that much. We would rather have others work to our wants and needs, compromising what they need first. Not that this is necessarily a bad thing, but this should not be a the prominent attitude in our dealings with others.

So, this reflection causes me to ask myself, is there anyone else in my life I need to have a change of attitude towards?