The average child can spend more than 30 hours a week in child care. With so much time spent at the child care center, it goes without saying that providers can have a significant impact on a child's development. Make sure this impact meets your expectations, particularly when it comes to behavior concerns. Most licensed centers are required to have a behavioral plan in place to outline their polices regarding this matter. When reviewing this information, make sure you know some of the key points to look for.
Age Appropriate Rules
All children need structure; however, rules need to be age appropriate. Ensure that the center has rules that are well suited to meet the behavior and development abilities of your child. For example, in a toddler room, a zero tolerance policy for running and yelling may set the children up for failure and will likely lead to constant reprimanding.
This constant reprimanding could lead a child to feel like they're failing, which could negatively affect their self-esteem. Review rules to ensure they are actually attainable.
Explanation Of Actions
When a child does something that isn't necessarily the best choice, it's not enough to simply say "no." The center staff should explain to the children first, why what they did was not a good decision and secondly, what a better choice would have been.
In terms of discipline, children learn best when they understand the why. If the center doesn't have this information outlined in their behavioral plan, you can at least watch their interaction with the children to see if they are performing this step on a regular basis.
Tone Of Discipline
The saying that it's not what you say, but how you say it is very important when it comes to the discipline of children. "Stop," quiet down" and "sit down" are all non-aggressive terms. However, when they are said with a loud voice, this can be intimidating to a younger, and even older, child.
Children want to be talked to, not talked at, which creates a positive tone for discipline. The ideal center is one that creates an atmosphere where the instructors are expected to treat the children with the same level of respect as they expect from the children.
When it comes to your behavioral concerns, communication is key. If you have a question about a behavioral plan or another concern, don't be afraid to discuss this with the care provider. After all, what's best for your child is most important. For more information, visit sites like http://www.kidscountry.net.