Kindergartners arrive at school and expect all adults to handle their problems for them. In preschool, the teachers fixed everything and at home, parents will step in to help work out problems. In Kindergarten we teach the children to speak up for themselves BEFORE coming to get a teacher to fix it. We teach the children to:
- Tell a classmate that they don’t like what he/she is doing to them (i.e., stop tapping me on the back while we are standing in line)
- Ask a friend to stop doing the behavior that they don’t like (i.e., stop taking my toys without asking me first)
- We teach the children to use their words first with their classmates
- When the words don’t work, then the children are taught to get an adult to help mediate the situation
- Sometimes even when an adult mediates, the misbehaving child ends up at the time out table because he/she chooses to bother a classmate and not stop this behavior after being asked once by the classmate and once by the teacher
At home try to encourage your child to work out small problems on his/her own before running to Mom and Dad. If your child runs to you at the first sign of a problem, ask him/her if he/she tried to speak to the person bothering him/her. If he/she hasn’t, send him/her back to try to work it out before you automatically step in to fix all of your child’s problems. Kindergartners can do this they just need some practice.