Updated: Sep 3, 2018
Below are my top 5 tips for promoting positive behaviour with children.
One of the things we have learned from teaching thousands of children is that a little hard work and dedication, in the beginning, can make life a lot easier and help to forge a greater skill set later in life.
1) Use humour - Make students laugh. Firstly it stops me taking myself too seriously, but it also helps to create a more positive and enjoyable environment to be in. Laughing and joking also helps build a connection with the group.
2) Be a role model - We can not expect children to exhibit good behaviour if we do not hold ourselves to the same standard. Children learn through observation and mirror the things they see within their environment.
Children will often respond to situations the same way we do. This is why we need to constantly work on our own habits and behaviour to be mindful that we don’t unwittingly pass them on.
3) Consequences and Rewards - A reward isn’t a bribe. It’s something your child earns for correctly doing what you’ve asked. It’s something that they’ve earned. The same is also true of a punishment. With punishment, it's important to make sure it is administered with a cool head. It’s very easy to let anger dictate the severity of the punishment we hand out.
4) Try to avoid emotional reactions - It’s so easy to scream and shout at them. But what sort of message is this sending? Disciplining a child needs to be dispassionate and appropriate. That’s not to say you shouldn’t raise your voice. We use a change of volume, tone and pitch constantly on the mat.
5) Don’t expect too much - Every child is different and there isn’t a blueprint to get this stuff right. Behaviour habits take time to build and time to retrain. Set small goals and offer rewards when they are achieved.
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