Children hiding?

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by dragonfly05, Apr 12, 2010.

  1. dragonfly05

    dragonfly05 Companion

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    Apr 12, 2010

    Hi there!

    I teach a class of 3 & 4 year olds, and hiding has been an ongoing problem. I came into this class about a month ago...so since then myself and the other teacher have been trying to stop this behavior. We have about 3-5 students who think it's fun to hide when we are starting morning circle, getting ready to line up to go outside or group potty, and when lining up to go back inside from outside play.

    Currently, we redirect them constantly, telling them to make a good choice. We also tell them that hiding is unsafe (they hide in the shelves and behind the sitting areas in the library). They just think it's funny. We have even taken them aside when we get outside for play to talk to them about their behavior and what they could do next time...for about 5 minutes, so they miss out on play during that time. We give stickers to those who are in line. We have talked to the parents. We use a lot of positive reinforcement. Last week they were hiding while we were getting ready to transition for Spanish ( a different teacher comes in), so they did not get to participate in Spanish. Instead, they sat with the other teacher. We don't chase them around, because we don't want them to think it's anymore of a game than they already do. We do, however, bring them back to circle/line, but they just get up again a few seconds/minutes later and take off.

    Any suggestions??? Thanks!! :help:
     
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  3. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Apr 12, 2010

    Well, my natural consequence would be that they can only play in a designated area because it isn't safe for them to hide from you. Explain to them that you have to know that they will line up when called or respond if you call them and since they can't do that, they have to stay in a designated area so that you can keep them safe. Do it everywhere for a week - inside at centers, outside, on the rug, etc... and stay very strict on it. The next week talk to them and see if they will agree to line up as they are supposed to. As soon as they even hesitate to line up, go back to the designated area only for a day or 2 and try again. Oh, and if they don't line up from the designated spot, make their activity even more limited, such as staying next to you at all times (yes it is a pain for you too, but they get tired of it fast and it makes the point without engaging in an argument with them!).
     
  4. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    Apr 12, 2010

    My first thought was similar to what Tasha just said, so I won't echo. :)

    My second thought was... can you rearrange furniture to minimize or eliminate the places in which they can hide? Back up shelves against walls, or cover open spaces with posters or even just blank paper, etc... Make it so they have to make a real effort to find an area to hide... so that either a) they won't want to any more or b) it takes them long enough that a teacher will notice :)
     
  5. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Apr 12, 2010

    I do similar to what both Tasha and clarnet have posted. I have one girl who loves to hide and is constantly seeking places to hide indoors. I've pretty much eliminated all the good hiding spots! I have a small couch in my room and I had to take the blanket off of it because that's all she did was hide under the blanket and get the other kids involved in wild play. I had left two pillows on it. Today she tried to hide under the pillows and the other kids started to get all worked up, so now I have removed the pillows!
     
  6. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Apr 13, 2010

    I would also try to work on the why of hiding.
     
  7. RedVac

    RedVac Rookie

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    Apr 14, 2010

    I agree with the previous posts-great ideas. I would also try to include the parents more with this. Are these a group of friends that play together outside of school? I have found that parent support can make all the difference when dealing with difficult behaviors.
     
  8. dragonfly05

    dragonfly05 Companion

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    Apr 14, 2010

    Thanks for all of your help!! The hiding has finally subsided quite a bit this week! We have been working on it since I started, and I think the kids are finally adjusting and understanding what is expected of them. I also had a meeting with one of the girl's parents Monday after school. We have also had some kids absent, which changes the group completely. All of these kids play together outside of school, it's a really close group...so it can be difficult to get them to stop playing. They have been this way since they were in the youngest classroom from what I've heard.

    Again, thank you! Hopefully we won't revert back to where we were before, but if we do...I will be using your advice!! :D
     
  9. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Apr 18, 2010

    Maybe missing out on Spanish or whtanot is what they want. In my classroom if they do this type of thing they are limited to table choices in their seats so they have to stay put and I can see everyone at once
     
  10. dragonfly05

    dragonfly05 Companion

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    Apr 18, 2010

    No, these kids LOVE Spanish. And, we are also having them sit in their seats if they can't stay on their carpet spot correctly. Things seem to be working out much better!!
     
  11. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Apr 18, 2010

    Kids hiding would terrify me. I always have fire drills (actually, real fires) in the back of my mind.

    I most certainly can't give advice on how to teach preschoolers except to say that I would find a way, any way, to get this behavior to stop ASAP.
     

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