Posts filed under ‘Tips’

Time Out…

In the school, we adapt the Time Out principle of disciplining a child. This means that if a child becomes too rowdy even after several warnings, he or she will be taken out from their group and will be asked to stay in a corner for awhile.If you’re having a hard time disciplining your child, Time Out may be an effective way to get your message across. However, this technique should be done as delicately as possible. Here are some tips that I find very useful when using this kind of disciplining approach:

1. Set the rules beforehand – At the start of the school year, I use the first week as an orientation to my pupils. Each day, I tackle a handful of rules and explain carefully to them why the rules are there. Preschoolers often get bored and their attention usually just wander away, so to make these rules stick to their little heads, I use different types of fun materials such as: props, puppets, etc for my presentation. NOTE: When setting the rules, make sure that you give emphasis on the consequences (not the punishment) of their actions if they do not follow the rules. Why? Refer to # 2.

Setting the Rules

2. Involve the kids in establishing the discipline for each violation. – After explaining the consequences for the misbehavior, try asking the kids on how they think they should be disciplined if they fail to follow the rules. Some kids might give you good answers while some kids might give you bizarre ones. But nevertheless, accept all suggestions and write it in the blackboard. Giving your pupils a sense of ownership will give them a boost on decision-making and in addition it will provide a great degree of sense of responsibility for each member of the class.

During this stage, suggest the TIME OUT principle and explain to them what it means. In my class, I swayed my pupils into thinking that TIME OUT will be the ultimate punishment of all.

Involve the kids

3. Write down the final rules and post it anywhere in the room – After we have finally decided on the rules in the classroom, I write down the rules in a big sheet of Manila paper and post it in the bulletin board. Though most of my pupils still can not read, the big sheet of paper is a symbol of an agreement between me and them. If you want to give more emphasis on this agreement, let the kids write their names around the written rules. This may sound a bit trivial, but believe me, it works. Every time a child misbehaves, I just refer to the big sheet of paper and point to his/her name and just like magic, the child comes back to his senses.

4. Remember the rules and always ( and I said always) be consistent. – If a child misbehaves, remember to provide the corresponding discipline for the violation. Always remember that children never forget anything. So if they see you giving the wrong discipline or not disciplining at all, they will lose their trust on the agreement.

5. Discipline do not punish – What’s the difference between the two? Well, Discipline is actually more of guiding a child to a more positive behavior. While Punishing is putting a halt to a bad behavior by using an extreme measure. When you discipline a child, you try to explain to the child why is he being isolated from the group. After the disciplining period, you need to follow-up the discipline by guided activities that will further explain to him the consequence of his action. However, if you punish a child, you just disengage him from the scene of the crime and probably put the child in an embarrassing situation. I know this is kinda tricky. I will try to provide a separate article for this.

6. Talk to your child about his/her behaviour – When a child misbehaves, there is always a chance that someone or something triggered that kind of behavior. Before reprimanding a child, try talking to him in a calm and relaxed manner about his misbehavior. Who knows, you might be persecuting the wrong person.

7. Allow a short transition period from TIME OUT to TIME IN. – When a child comes back from a TIME OUT session, I usually give my pupil a task to complete before returning to his seat. Sometimes, I just let him arrange our bookshelf or probably just put some toys back to their proper places. This transition period is done so the child can acclimate himself again to the social set-up. If a child has offended another classmate, I let them do the task together.

Disciplining a child can be a very tricky job for teachers and parents. But, I think, if this process is executed in a calm and delicate manner, it can provide your child with a good moral blanket when he grows up.

November 5, 2007 at 7:45 am Leave a comment


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