Need help with discipline....

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by elliemay, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. elliemay

    elliemay Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    We just had our first week of school. I teach M-Thurs. 4's from 9-1.
    Here's my issue. In the past, I might have 1-3 children who had difficulities listening when spoken to. This year I have 13(whole class) that doesn't listen/acknowledge they are being spoken to! I did not want to do green/yellow/red light this year because I felt it was causing certain children to be "labeled" when they had to move their clothespin.

    We had a class meeting the first day and came up with our rules. Mainly they are just basic---listen when teacher is speaking, be kind to our friends, be safe in the classroom---those sorts of things. We discussed these rules/manners everyday in different ways--chart, books about, and songs (sung by me just to get their attention). I used a "thinking chair" for several of the students but my classroom is small (church preschool Sunday School room size) and it didn't seem to "remove" them enough to really "think" about what they had done. I need to come up with a specific course of action this weekend so on Monday I can tell the children about it and put it in my September newsletter to the parents.

    I have used a "penny a day" system where they get to "shop" once a month with pennies earned. I have used the red/yellow/green also.

    I do not want to raise my voice just to get their attention. What suggestions do you have that might work with these children where it seems whatever you say "it is going in one ear and out the other"? Wait...the info doesn't even have the CHANCE to get into their little brains... :help:
     
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  3. greengables

    greengables Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    When my class gets too loud I turn off the lights. Stops them cold. I can then talk quietly about the noise level before turning the lights back on. Sometimes we just stop and everyone puts their heads down on the table. Even one minute can be a looong time to them. Simple, simple directions. Start with just one: "Everyone stop." You will have to WAIT them out. Then "Look at me." Again, wait. Then, "Come to the carpet." You get the idea. Try having them repeat back what you said. It seems like it takes forever (some years it does!). Get the routines and procedures down first, before you try to do any academics.
     
  4. amethysst

    amethysst Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I am in a similar situation...I have seventeen this year and twelve of them are boys. Circle time isn't the problem so much for me because the majority is being attentive it is open centers time that is hard to control without feeling like I am barking at them to settle down constantly. Our county also has guidelines through ECERS and ELC that they are supposed to be able to play in any center they want and should have free roam of the classroom. Trying to come up with an incentive plan but not sure what will work...any ideas?
     
  5. greengables

    greengables Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Surely you have some limits on use of centers? What if all 17 wanted to play with blocks at the same time? I limit use of each center to 4 children at a time. We rotate 3x so each child WILL get to a center of choice eventually. Once at a center they must stay there till the timer rings and we clean up and switch. Roam at will? Yikes, there's a recipe for disaster. Model your expectations, practice, practice, practice and let them know you are serious about infractions. It takes a looong time with many repititions, but they will get it.
     
  6. elliemay

    elliemay Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Thanks for the great advice so far. I have tried turning out the lights already this week. That has worked for me in the past but this class just keeps on going. I have 2 windows in my room, so it doesn't really get dark.

    I need to come up with some sort of plan--reward system for treasure box at end of week if they stay on xyz or I don't know. I'm at a lose....
     
  7. Whitchel

    Whitchel Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I teach preschool, with 17 children...this year we have used a magic wand with a kind of sound that really works. AT the beginning of the year we talked about if they hear this sounds it means to stop and listen...and it is amazing at how it works. I don't do a reward system...if a child is not listening or doing the correct thing, they will sit in a chair for the time allowed by their age, all of them are four except for one. And I tell them when they are able to listen and do what they are supposed to be doing then they can get up...it really doesn't take them that long to decide to do the right things. I also have to use ecers, and they do have open center time. They can go to whatever center they want to...but each center has a certain amount of hooks for their name tags, if the hooks are full they have to play somewhere else until someone leaves that certain center. I also have 26 open spots for them to choose from, so lots of choices.

    I have never had much luck with rewards, it seems they work for a little while and they loose their appeal to them. Hope something works for you!
     
  8. skerns

    skerns Companion

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Maybe you could use listening games, like Simon says. I also play games with them using manipulatives, such as counter bears. I whisper things like, put the bear on your head, under your chair, etc. We practice a lot. I really like the magic wand idea and think I may include using my windchime this year. I do use the lights too, as a matter of fact, that is one of my classroom rules: No talking when the lights are out. If they do, I take away one of their blessing bucks and they immediately sit out for age appropriate minutes. So do you have an aid?? Mine sit in the hall chair with the aid. They are not allowed up until they can tell me what rule they did not obey and apologize and agree to try to remember the next time. Sometimes we practice being quiet. I tell them they are too loud and we need to practice. I turn out the lights and set the timer. If they are not quiet during that time, we start over. They get it. Sometimes it take a few times. :)

    So for the run on and rambling, really tired. :unsure:
     
  9. beckyeduk8er

    beckyeduk8er Comrade

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I would highly encourage you take take a look at conscious discipline by Dr. Becky Baily.

    Since reading her book I am a completely different teacher. I don't have nearly the behavior concerns, and because we spend so much time at the beginning of the year making connections they are so much kinder to each other. I was able to get rid of my light system and treasure chest and have not looked back!

    I had young threes last year. Last year I had only 1 child hit all year :) By October most of my kids were able to use their words to problem solve (I don't like that please stop, can I have that when your done, etc.)

    I was able to teach rather then manage. :lol:

    I also highly encourage you to decide on your attention getting procedures and practice, practice, practice. Also just use 1 or 2 not 10!

    For example when the children are at centers. I turn off the light and they all freeze and look at me. I tell them 2 minutes until clean up (this warning is very important) and turn the light back on. After 2 minutes I turn the light back off and sing the clean up song (what ever song you like, but be consistent and only use one). I leave the lights off. After the first child has finished cleaning up I put on a song at circle and the students join me as they finish.


    When they are working at tables or carpet I use the tootsie roll cheer (I found it on Dr. Jeans website)

    Tootsie Roll (roll your hands)
    Lolly Pop (pretend to lick a lolly pop)
    We've been talking (make a talking motion with your hands)
    Now lets stop! (We do stop in sing language)-They know to look at me when they say stop.

    If everyone is not quiet the first time repeat it.

    When you are introducing what ever procedure you want you need to do it over and over again through out the day. Make you to praise them when the do it right and correct them if they don't stop and look at you.
     
  10. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    Aug 30, 2009

    Could you ring a bell to get their attention? Be sure and tell them when they hear it ring, they should stop whatever they are doing and look at you.
     
  11. greengables

    greengables Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2009

    I don't do a reward system, either. I have 2 sessions of 15 students each day and the logistics would be a nightmare. I do look for positive behavior and hand out stickers like crazy at the beginning of the year and verbally praise students following directions, sitting quietly, etc. Also have them role play what a quiet, on-task class looks and sounds like and what a noisy, off-task class looks like and show them how much fun they can have when they get all their work done. Tell them you're looking for a specific behavior and make a big deal when you catch them doing it.
     
  12. elliemay

    elliemay Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2009

    Thank you all for such great ideas! Now, just to implement them to suit my class....

    Have a wonderful week!
     
  13. Beverly

    Beverly Comrade

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    Aug 30, 2009

    I've turned out the lights and had kids scream in response... :dizzy:
     
  14. punchinello

    punchinello Comrade

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    Aug 30, 2009

    beckyeduk8ter....
    I LOVE the book and am trying to read and re-read so I can make it work in my classroom.
    Great quote from the book - "A reward or punishment is chosen when an adult judges a child's behavior to be good or bad, then delivers something good or bad to express that judgement....children come to depend on the judgement of others as the basis for their own moral decisions. Reward and punishment create 'other control'."

    You seem to have made your classroom work with this idea. I'd love to hear some of your tips!

    greengables, I also agree with recognizing positive behavior. I'm trying to just state what the child did, rather than saying "I love the way..."
     
  15. threesyeasy

    threesyeasy Rookie

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    Sep 12, 2009

    I have a real problem with my kids listening sometimes as well...I've found that having them do a type of simon says gets their attention and they listen well afterward. I loudly say TOUCH YOUR NOSE and for whatever miraculous reason they ALWAYS respond quietly and touch it, then I go on to say touch your ears, hips, etc. I throw in new body parts sometimes like shins, wrists etc. and they love learning where they are. I go through about five body parts then ask them to catch a bubble because I need to speak with them and they are like completely different children.
     

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