"You have to reach the heart before you can reach the head." I first heard this statement while reading an article about Carter Bayton in a September, 1991 issue of Life Magazine. Carter Bayton was asked to work with thirteen 2nd grade boys who were considered so disruptive that they couldn't make in it a "regular" classroom. After six months of working with these boys they were doing so well that they challenged the "regular" class to a math contest and won. Carter found many ways to be effective with his students, but said the foundation was to reach their hearts before he could reach their minds.
So, what is the difference between encouragement and praise? Praise teaches dependency on external feedback (I'm “okay” if you like what I do, and I feel badly if you don't like what I do), while encouragement teaches internal validation, (I use self-evaluation to determine how I feel about what I do).
Adults and children express emotional energy on their faces, in their voices, and in the way they move or stand. Because children are still developing their language skills, they trust the message of this nonverbal communication far more than they do mere words.
Many difficult problems seem easier to solve when choices are presented as solutions. As the teacher, you can help your students succeed by offering an appropriate choice between at least two acceptable solutions. The key words here are appropriate and acceptable.
There is so much focus in Positive Discipline on getting students involved in solutions, validating their feelings, asking them questions, understanding their behavior, connecting with them, and so on. Do you ever wonder, “What about me?”
When children are misbehaving, they are speaking to adults in code? A misbehaving child is a discouraged child. The primary goal of all children is to feel a sense of belonging and significance. Too often they form a mistaken belief about how to seek belonging and significance—as explained in the Mistaken Goal Chart. Unless adults know how to break the code—children usually experience the opposite of belonging and significance. Click on this link: Mistaken Goal Chart so you can follow along as I explain the code.
The majority of discipline models practiced in homes and schools today are based on punishments and rewards. Positive Discipline is based on the Adlerian model of eliminating all punishment and rewards in favor of encouragement that addresses the basic needs of children to belong and feel significant. Our task is to help children find belonging and significance in socially useful ways.
Role-playing is a fun and engaging way for students to learn and practice important life skills. Evidence-based studies identify the importance of integrated daily practice of social and emotional learning and specifically citing role-plays as an important participatory element.