I have learned the What Not to Wear cardinal rules of the 4 B's: No b**bs, back, belly or crack. No problema with the first (when I say I am small I mean everywhere!). I haven't shown the belly since I was about 4 years old and supporting a tummy in a bikini was still cute. Crack happens with eggs only because thongs don't happen with me (more on that in a minute!). My back won't make a HUGE appearance often because it is 60 degrees in my classroom and we want to waste money on turning Firsties into popsicles.
As many meetings as we have at the beginning of the year, the discussion of flip flops and shoes always shimmies its way into our agendas....because everyone knows, that if you are wearing flip flops you just became an ineffective teacher who left your brain in the pair of tennis shoes or grandma shoes on your closet floor...and I am not saying this cruelly. =)
If you grab this *freebie*, I would love for you to please consider following me! =)
Now we are stepping into the next topic...in my cute giraffe shoes! =)
I thought I would try and share little Conscious Discipline tips in my posts(when I remember!). CD is so powerful and I really am amazed at the skills my kiddos learn to solve problems. CD educates and helps teachers first by developing an understanding of why behaviors happen and why the tactics we use often don't work. One way to understand our kiddos who may be having behavior problems is to understand where they are functioning in their brain. When kiddos are angry, sad, and frustrated, they are functioning in their brain stem. This is the fight or flight survival mode. We want to move kiddos to the frontal lobe because this is where problem solving occurs and optimal learning.
When a kiddo is throwing a fit, steaming mad or crying, THEY ARE NOT HEARING ONE SINGLE THING YOU SAY!!!!! They cannot reason or clearly process what you are saying or trying to explain to them. What they are needing you to do is understand and help them calm down. One of the best was to do this is by breathing. Teaching the kiddos that getting oxygen to their brains not only helps them learn better but will help their brain calm down. One of the components of CD is the Safe Place. This is where a child (or YOU!) can go to calm down before addressing the issue/problem...the Safe Place is not time out. I will share more about the Safe Place in another post.
CD teaches the children and adults that there are 4 ways to calm down and practice breathing: THE BALLOON, THE DRAIN, STAR, and doing the PRETZEL. The explanation for each icon is included in the printable. This is from the CD website. Click on the picture to grab you own copy.
Having the child take deep breaths really does help. I still struggle at times to help certain children do this because it seems I always have one or two kiddos that pitches a fit when they don't get their way. I recognize that is one of my "buttons" (although I am usually VERY patient). I am not for spending LOTS of time with a kiddo that
needs to get over it and just obey me is struggling with their independence. I tell them I understand what they are going through and how that must feel very frustrating/scary/sad etc. I help them start to breathe and then leave them to calm themselves down. This can also be when you use the We Care Bag and the School Family job of the Encourager can help. Once a child starts the deep, belly breathing they move out of the brain stem and can begin to talk to you about the problem.
My kiddos even recognize when I start to S.T.A.R. I'll hear them say, "Ms. Price your face looks like this (and mirror my face). Your body is telling me you are feeling very frustrated. You need to STAR." They will then come and rub my back (like I rub their backs) and tell me I can handle whatever the problem is.
I know this might leave you a little confused and it can be. CD is like a puzzle. Each piece is necessary but you don't really get a true picture until you put it all together. A good way to start is by introducing one icon at a time. Spend 2 or 3 days or even a week practicing each breathing for 1 or 2 minutes a day. Have your kiddos help find times when the class needs to help a friend calm down and use one of the breathing strategies. We have a star wand that we pull out when we need to help a friend.
The most important tip you need to learn is THEY CANNOT LISTEN, RATIONALIZE, or PROBLEM SOLVE when they are in the brain stem and an emotional mess. We must help them calm down and breathe.
We get out for Spring Break tomorrow and I am so excited! I love Spring! I am going to spend time with my 3 Chickadees (my nieces) and by my sister's pool with a book (if Mother Nature is on her hormone meds). =)
Thank you to all of the sweet friends who have given me an award. I appreciate it and will be by to pick it up. I am humbled you would give one to me.
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