Recently there seems to have been a flush of television shows, radio programmes and press articles discussing the issue of children’s behaviour. Most of them putting forward the opinion that it is getting worse.
This got me thinking, what do we actually mean when we talk about good behaviour?
It can be easy to underestimate young children’s ability to utilise memory, perhaps because as adults we find it so hard to remember the early days of our own lives. However research, and recent developments in neuroscience, show us that young children are laying down memories all the time.
Well when you stop and think about it, that’s no real surprise, they have to be, otherwise how would they be learning? And learning really is their thing!
When I started working in education I remember suddenly being struck by the question, “What is it that defines learning as opposed to mere recall…is there a difference?”
Well of course it is partly what you say, but it’s easy to underestimate the impact of the tone you use.
In almost all of the #H2SC interviews with children, great importance is placed on how adults speak to them. Words like nice, polite and kind come up over and over, with a dislike of shouting or harsh sounds and a preference for soft and lyrical tones.
Here is the latest in my series of articles based on conversations with children, first published in Teach Early Years magazine. In each piece, I focus on one prominent theme. For this one, it’s PRAISE!
My thanks to editor Jacob Stow for allowing reproduction, and if you want to know more, details of this and their other magazines and resources are available at: https://www.teachwire.net
*What do you really like when being addressed by an adult?
*I like being praised and being spoken to nicely. I like when they (adults) are proud of you. (A - male)
My recent visit to Estonia included a weekend off, and during that time, I did some Yoga and Pilates classes. I don’t speak the language, but I nevertheless found it relatively easy to follow instructions. I think this reflects some important points about basic levels of communication.