The child care community is currently in the process of change and educators/home child care providers are continuously making efforts to create engaging environments and experiences to foster children’s learning and development. They are deeply engaged in recognizing and adapting their own personal perspectives to support children’s well-being and their sense of belonging.
We as educators/home child care providers and parents/guardians all have our own personal perspectives, values and belief systems, and it can feel unnatural to change or adapt how we express ourselves. Recognizing and being more conscious of the statements we use with children helps shift the focus to a more positive approach that can lead to a decrease in the intensity and frequency of challenging behaviours.
Three key strategies promoted by Children’s Integration Support Services that may require an adaptation of your current practices are;
- Empathetic Response
- Validation of needs, wants and emotions in children.
- Say what to do versus what not to do
- Clear positive statements that support children in knowing what to do.
- Positive attention paired with descriptive praise
- Acknowledgement of children’s efforts and accomplishments.
These strategies are all used with a “You” statement which focuses directly on the child. It promotes the foundation of children’s learning by incorporating belonging, a sense of well- being, engagement and expression.
Educators/home child care providers, parents/guardians should acknowledge their efforts and recognize that change takes time.
Brooks Hachey and Jocelyne Desbiens, Behaviour Consultants
Children’s Integration Support Services