Friday, January 22, 2010

Teasing in Early Childhood Education Settings

                   “Use what talents you possess; the woods 
would be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best.” 
~Henry van Dyke

“Neener-Neener” seems to be the universal sound for teasing in early childhood education. Teasing isn’t allowed in the preschool environment I teach in. As far as I am concerned it’s right up there with a safety hazard (i.e. hitting, throwing, biting, etc.).
Teasing simply doesn’t allow anyone to feel safe or comfortable to be themselves.
We clap for all our efforts, skills and talents in the classroom. I hear random clapping throughout the day…sometimes I never really know why. It’s just become part of who we are.
What I love is that the children really 'know' the difference between encouragement and teasing. They have become troubleshooters and I often hear conversations regarding encouragement….or encouraging others.
“Good job, Jackie, you did it!” (Clapping)
“Hey, be nice…he is still learning and you can clap or help him, Tommy!”
“Who want's to give me a Hi-Five? I tied my shoe…kind-a-sort-a!”


Montessori on Mars said...

I love this post and the quote! Children are even very supportive of me in my class like after a presentation they will say, "Nice work, teacher!"

Barbra The Bloggess said...

I could see that by the dialogue you have posted. It really touches me. Kids are so authentic. Compliments from little ones-in my experience are truly genuine.