The Center believes in positive guidance and discipline. First, we set clear, fair limits of behavior in the classroom and on the playground. We use postive words and phrases at all times. Children are reminded of the desired behavior. They are told what they can do - not what they can not do. For example, "Walking feet in the hallway," instead of "No running."
The Center helps children learn to solve problems by using their words. Teachers are very skilled, active listeners. They observe and help the children to verbalize the situation - "You are upset because you both want the truck." We accept those feelings and reaffirm the limits. "I can see you are very angry. It's not OK to hurt your friends. Can you use your words? What else can we do about the truck?" Then we offer to help without telling them what to do. "We could take turns with the truck, play together with the truck, or put the truck away. What would you like to do?"
When a child exhibits an undesired behavior, the teacher redirects the child. If redirection does not change the behavior, time out is used. Time out is a time for children to regroup, settle, focus, and calm down. Only teachers may place a child in time out. When the child feels calm enough to return to the group and change the undesired behavior, then he/she makes that decision. When the child is ready to return to the group, we discuss the desired behavior with the child, reassuring the child that it is the behavior that is unacceptable, not the child. We correct the behavior, not the child. When a child is removed from the group for disciplinary reasons, he/she shall never be out of sight of a staff member. Time out will not exceed one minute per year of age of a child, and will not be used with children under the age of two.
No child shall be subject to physical punishment, corporal punishment, verbal abuse, or threats. Cruel, severe, unusual, or unnecessary punishment shall not be inflicted upon children. Derogatory remarks about family members of children or about the children themselves shall not be made. Teachers do not tease children, humiliate them, use sarcasm, or make fun of their "cute sayings". Teachers will treat each child with respect. Making fun of the way children express themselves by repeating it and laughing can cause loss of self-esteem, no matter how well intentioned.
No child or group of children shall be allowed to discipline another child.
No child shall be deprived of any part of meals or snacks for disciplinary reasons. Food is never treated as a reward nor withheld as punishment.