Bam Radio: Tips for addressing misbehavior in preschool

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on July 10, 2011

in Bam Radio Series on Early Childhood Education

I recently participated in the Bam Radio conversation Bad Behavior: When to Ignore, When to Intervene” with Rae Pica, Mary Gersten, and Kate Williams. This is truly a wonderful discussion and I hope you will stop and take a listen. If you can’t listen to it here or here

Rae Pica with Mary Gersten, Kate Williams, Deborah J. Stewart

I have highlighted some of the points from our conversation that I really found valuable and wanted to share them with you.

When addressing misbehavior consider the following tips…

-You need to know your students well so that you can know when best to intervene and when to wait.

Individualize your responses to the development and needs of each child.

-Understand the situation before you intervene – observe and know what is happening first, see how it affecting others, and determine if it is something that can be worked out without your intervention.

-Sometimes misbehavior is a call for help, other times it is a demand for attention, and other times it is simply behavior (that my be annoying to you) but is typical for the age of the child – learn to recognize why the misbehavior exists so you can determine the most effective and appropriate response.

-Don’t be nitpicky- the more you harp on a child, the more he or she will start to tune you out.

-Be in control of your own emotions, children will pick up on your response so make sure your response is appropriate to the situation at hand. In other words, know if your response is coming from a place of being annoyed or coming out of concern for the well being of the child.

-Seek first to understand and take into consideration child development as well as your own

-See guidance as a continuous process of teaching and learning

-Build bonds with your children

-Model the behavior you want to see in your children

-Know and love your kids

I would have loved to sit and chat with these ladies all day – they both had so many thoughtful ideas. Be sure to take a listen to the Radio Show: Bad Behavior: When to Ignore, When to Intervene”

This article is being shared with you by Deborah Stewart of Teach Preschool - Sharing the wonders of early learning in action!

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