GUIDELINES

We aim to help children become happy, reasonable, co-operative participants in the program through positive and non-threatening behaviour guidance techniques.

Staff actively encourages children to have a positive attitude to each other and empathy for other’s feelings. Our expectations are always developmentally realistic. Staff encourages children to accept differences, appreciate the capabilities and limitations of children with special or additional needs and to actively support them.

The centre has behaviour guidelines to ensure the strategies are applied consistently by all staff for children at the centre. The behaviour guidance strategies used help build positive self-esteem and encourage children to learn to be responsible for their behaviour. Behaviour guidance strategies will vary according to the goals of children’s behaviour, the nature of the behaviour and the age of the child.

The centre also provides an adequate number of equipment and toys which are the same or similar and the program is designed to provide a variety of spaces and activities for smaller groups of children to reduce the likelihood of conflict.

Educators develop trusting relationships with children and knowledge of each child as an individual. Children will accept guidance better from those they know and trust. Older children are encouraged within the program to talk about conflicts which arise and how they can solve problems. This helps children to begin to deal with conflict independently and appropriately.

SOME EXAMPLES OF GUIDANCE STRATEGIES FOR INNAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIOUR INCLUDE:

1.      Redirection and diversion to other activities

2.      Positive role modelling by staff.

3.      Encouragement and positive feedback for appropriate behaviour.

4.      Ignoring, or giving minimal attention to inappropriate attention seeking behaviour (except when it involves hurting another child).

5.      Give more attention to a child who has been hurt than the child doing the hurting, i.e. biting.

6.      Give children choices within limits, with agreed consequences if limits are exceeded (NB consequences are not used as a punishment).

7.      Provide a ‘table for one’ with an activity to allow a child to calm down by him / herself.

8.      Children are spoken to firmly and calmly, with the focus being on the inappropriate action rather than the child.

9.      Children are taught to communicate their feelings verbally, (e.g. “I don’t like it when you hurt me,” rather than lashing out physically).

In rare cases where a child’s behaviour is abnormally aggressive and presents a danger to other children, is abnormally reserved, or very inconsistent, assistance may be sought from Children’s Development Resource officers. Parents must give their consent before the centre can ask Children’s Resource and Development officers for assistance with their child. Please ask the Coordinator if you require more information on guiding children’s behaviour.

The local council provides these support people to assist staff and parents to cope effectively with children who have special needs and this includes children displaying difficult or abnormal behaviour.

 

TOYS

We discourage children from bringing their own toys to the centre, other than a soft toy or comforter to be used at sleep or rest time. These should be labelled with the child’s name.

Toys and clothes promoting war and violence, including capes and homemade toys, should not be brought to the centre as it is believed they promote a negative way of dealing with conflict.  If a child has such items in their bag, they will remain there and parents will be spoken to on collection.

However, sometimes the opportunity may arise for a discussion to take place with the children that highlights the issues surrounding superhero and war toys.