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Old 01-28-2019, 05:19 PM
 
Location: Orlando
1,867 posts, read 2,483,566 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VexedAndSolitary View Post
*standing ovation*

My four (now ages 19-36) were all taught self control from toddlerhood; they were also taught that "participation awards" and the ilk are ridiculous and that to gain an award/reward they must strive and do well.

Mine were taught that emotional outbursts gained them nothing; you have taught your son the opposite.
Oh come on. Give the kid a break -- he's four years old. There's still time for him to learn to be a productive human being.
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Old 01-28-2019, 05:22 PM
 
Location: NY>FL>VA>NC>IN
2,254 posts, read 846,707 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WellShoneMoon View Post
Oh come on. Give the kid a break -- he's four years old. There's still time for him to learn to be a productive human being.
At four all of mine could control themselves; "self soothe" as a far more eloquent poster above me, stated. Hysterical sobbing as described in the OP over not getting a sticker indicates an overly sensitive, overly coddled child who thinks that throwing a fit shall gain him Mother's favor and it in fact, did. Mother's melodramatic reaction that included circumventing Teacher fits the profile.
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Old Yesterday, 11:21 AM
 
11,620 posts, read 9,489,025 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VexedAndSolitary View Post
At four all of mine could control themselves; "self soothe" as a far more eloquent poster above me, stated. Hysterical sobbing as described in the OP over not getting a sticker indicates an overly sensitive, overly coddled child who thinks that throwing a fit shall gain him Mother's favor and it in fact, did. Mother's melodramatic reaction that included circumventing Teacher fits the profile.
I can agree with this while also agreeing with the week of "stars" being a really bad behavior management strategy.
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Old Yesterday, 11:28 AM
 
Location: NY>FL>VA>NC>IN
2,254 posts, read 846,707 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by somebodynew View Post
I can agree with this while also agreeing with the week of "stars" being a really bad behavior management strategy.
How so? In the nursery school (not a daycare, a 3hr per day nursery school) two of mine attended they had a similar setup, can't recall (these two are now 21 and 19) if it was stars or check marks or colors?...maybe? but every Friday children who had earned enough XYX got to pick from a Prize Box.

To my recollection there were no issues nor complaints; both attended two years each. Demographic was middle class housewives as school only open 9-noon. School was very small (class sizes ranged from 6-10 pupils, 2 three and 2 four y/o classes), private, strict, heavy on kinder prep (teaching those who had not yet learned, to read, count and write name) (and very sought after, had to register two years ahead) and did not accept children with behavioral issues.

Last edited by VexedAndSolitary; Yesterday at 11:44 AM..
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Old Yesterday, 11:53 AM
 
11,620 posts, read 9,489,025 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VexedAndSolitary View Post
How so? In the nursery school (not a daycare, a 3hr per day nursery school) two of mine attended they had a simiar setup, can't recall (these two are now 21 and 19) if it was stars or check marks or colors?...maybe? but every Friday children who had earned enough XYX got to pick from a Prize Box.
Meh, it's a small matter all things considered, I guess. But kids don't need to be bribed to behave if their behavior is addressed based on what is causing it in the moment. AND 4 year olds don't have good enough planning capacity to work toward a week end goal. It is ineffective and potentially counterproductive. If they don't "get" why sme of the kids get a prize and they don't, it can be detrimental. For most kids, this is going to be in the ah well, that's life category... But I still would not (did not, in fact) choose that in my behavior model of child care...

Quote:
To my recollection there were no issues nor complaints; both attended two years each. Demographic was middle class housewives as school only open 9-noon. School was very small (class sizes ranged from 6-10 pupils, 2 three and 2 four y/o classes), private, strict, heavy on kinder prep (teaching those who had not yet learned, to read, count and write name) (and very sought after, had to register two years ahead) and did not accept children with behavioral issues.
Well, any behavior model is going to work smashingly with anyone who does not have "behavioral issues".
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Old Yesterday, 01:28 PM
 
208 posts, read 363,811 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wac_432 View Post
My thoughts? Okay. Here goes.

tldr; This thread kinda explains why many of the teachers we've talked to complain about some kids coming into kindergarten with insufficient self-regulatory skills. I think your son can meet the challenge of his preschool's behavioral reward system, with your aid and encouragement.

Our twins have a star chart at home that works almost exactly the same way as this classroom's. They've understood and complied with it since they were 2.5. At 4 years old they understood the concept of banking their stars to get bigger rewards, and they sure as heck understood the concept of losing a star for bad behavior. They also managed to (sometimes) self-regulate their emotions when their sibling had enough stars to buy a reward at the store, and they did not. They are certainly very vocal about telling us how sad it makes them that they didn't have enough stars. This is sometimes accompanied by emotional outbursts, but they are doing an excellent job of channeling their emotions into appropriate words and expressions, without inappropriate outbursts. I'm very proud of them, so please excuse the [not] humble brag. They even (sometimes) combine their stars to buy a bigger reward that they both agree upon, though usually there's a lot of dickering that ends up with no resolution. Sometimes they will even donate stars to each other to help the person with a shortage buy a reward. And... sometimes not.

So, yeah, it's very possible for 4-year-olds to keep the idea of reward and penalty in their minds for more than 2 hours. I would focus more on challenging your son's social/emotional skills and trying to develop them, rather than insulating him from any stress. You might be very suprised what he can achieve, if given the opportunity and some encouragement. However, you know your son best. Just focus on using/building on the classroom tools/structure to keep him moving forward in his development.

Lemme unpack the rest:

A crying child is not an unmitigated disaster. The tears don't have to stop immediately at all costs. Sometimes a child needs to get over that emotional hump so they can get to the point where they can calmly express themselves. The more you allow them to get their own emotions under control, and then move on to calmly explaining the situation and asking for help, the better they'll be at it, and the faster they will mature, emotionally. If you rush to slap a band-aid over every little emotional boo-boo, they're never going to progress.

An inability to self sooth (did you say you spent 90 minutes later at home?) due to missing out on a reward is not developmentally-appropriate for most 4-year-olds. If your son is neurotypical, he should be able to develop the capability to manage his emotions in a shorter time frame, even if he doesn't always choose to exercise it. So this is an area that probably needs some work.


This is appropriate reinforcment of rewards for good behavior. Not getting a reward due to insufficient performance is not a draconian punishment, but rather a fact of life, and something your son is eventually going to need to learn. This sounds like an appropriate level for 4-year-olds.

I wish we could insulate our children from every disappointing or stressful situation and still have them grow up to be functional adults, but that's not the way it works. You have to experience small stresses, disappointments, and losses, like missing out on getting a sticker when you are four, in order to develop the skills to deal with the bigger stresses later in life. There is no need to wait until kindergarten or some other magic cut-off age to begin these lessons.


I personally think that bar is a little low, but you do you. I would not try to change the classroom rules or go fight the administration, that's a losing battle. They have a system that works for them and most of their children. If it doesn't work for you, you can modify your home behavior to meet your personal goals. For instance:

You could consider giving him a reward, yourself, for a positive report from his teachers. Say, maybe he gets a star for his teachers saying he's been good, and for reporting his day to you. Our kids get a "school star" if they tell us one thing they learned, one thing they played, and what they had for a snack at preschool. You could ask your son how many stars he earned, and add (or subtract) stars based on his home behavior over the weekend, to achieve the reward you said you wanted to give. That might lessen the impact of the weeks he is sub-8 stars in class. After all, you don't want him to just give up on good behaviour if he's never getting enough to earn the reward.

You don't want to subvert the school structure or teach him that mommy is always going to come to the rescue if his peers/teachers/bosses don't approve of his performance, so use caution and be sure to build on top of what is happening outside the home, rather than reversing the socal structure of the outside world the second he's back with you.


I'd be happy to have our children in such a challenging environment. We are disappointed in the seemingly-lax educational focus of our children's preschool. Wanna trade?

wac_432, I agree with some of your points but not a standing ovation. I've already spoke with the director and she agreed that the system definitely needed some modifications. The first thing, is not to reward all the kids with prizes as a big production. I also spoke to some of my friends who are school educators and was told there were many things wrong that needed changes.


You stated that your kids have a star chart at home, and I think that's a great idea! The problem at my sons school was there is no visual chart for the kids or parents to see. The teachers kept track of the stars in a notebook. There was no communication to the parents about how the rewards system works or what behaviors were being monitored. Again, if my child lost a star on Monday for playing with his food (this is considered a bad behavior) then on Friday how is he supposed to know he is being punished for that? There is no immediate correction or reward for doing good. Will he remember something from 4 days ago?? That's much longer than 2 hours as you stated, lol. Maybe your 4 year old can, and that's great! He is unable to keep track of his own stars or know he can't loose or gain a certain number. They only tell the parents, if we know or remember to ask, how many stars the child has.


You stated "This is appropriate reinforcment of rewards for good behavior" but my child was not rewarded for his good behavior. He had 8 stars for good behavior on Friday when I picked him up but the things he lost stars for was overshadowed by that, so he got nothing. That is why I thought he deserved at least a sicker because he DID do some good things and children need to know the things they did well, not always what the failed at.


VexedAndSolitary, trust me my child knows that having outbursts and tantrums are not tolerated at home and will be ignored by me and his father. I don't reward him or constantly comfort him when he misbehaves or cries. But I do tell him immediately what he did wrong and how to correct the behavior the next time. Something his teachers fail to do. It's not fair to him or the other students to wait a week to learn that.


There were so many things wrong with this system, it's not even funny and the directory agrees. Yesterday when I went in there were memo's on all the kids cubbies explaining to the parents about the rewards program and how it works. A summary of the behaviors being monitored, etc. They also lowered the # of stars from 9, to get a sticker, to 5. Some other things as well. Its a start but still needs some work I think.
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Old Yesterday, 01:51 PM
 
947 posts, read 593,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rere900 View Post
Its a start but still needs some work I think.
It sounds like they did their part to correct the flaws in their system. Consider that a win. If i were you I would now direct my energies at making sure my child understands that crying for 120+ minutes to the point of being unable to speak over a minor disappointment is no longer acceptable behavior.

He’s a ‘big boy’ now and will definitely need to learn to self-manage which will be something expected of him going forward. It will take behavior modification on both your parts beginning with you fighting the urge to win his battles for him.

That’s not to say he can’t cry and show disappointment. But he will need to fight the urge to throw hours long tantrums going forward. I get the feeling the reason the teachers weren’t trying is because he was inconsolable.
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Old Yesterday, 02:03 PM
 
208 posts, read 363,811 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BLDSoon View Post
It sounds like they did their part to correct the flaws in their system. Consider that a win. If i were you I would now direct my energies at making sure my child understands that crying for 120+ minutes to the point of being unable to speak over a minor disappointment is no longer acceptable behavior.

He’s a ‘big boy’ now and will definitely need to learn to self-manage which will be something expected of him going forward. It will take behavior modification on both your parts beginning with you fighting the urge to win his battles for him.

That’s not to say he can’t cry and show disappointment. But he will need to fight the urge to throw hours long tantrums going forward. I get the feeling the reason the teachers weren’t trying is because he was inconsolable.
Please! Your taking my statement and turning it into something totally different. Nice try though. He didn't throw hours long tantrums. He didn't cry for 120+ minutes. Maybe when I asked him what was wrong he didn't speak because he could not explain something to me he didn't understand! Ever think of that logic?? Once we got home he was still disappointed for a while because he kept saying, "I didn't get a star" He was not having a tantrum or crying uncontrollably.
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Old Yesterday, 02:09 PM
 
10,349 posts, read 7,952,336 times
Reputation: 6512
Quote:
Originally Posted by somebodynew View Post
Meh, it's a small matter all things considered, I guess. But kids don't need to be bribed to behave if their behavior is addressed based on what is causing it in the moment. AND 4 year olds don't have good enough planning capacity to work toward a week end goal. It is ineffective and potentially counterproductive. If they don't "get" why sme of the kids get a prize and they don't, it can be detrimental. For most kids, this is going to be in the ah well, that's life category... But I still would not (did not, in fact) choose that in my behavior model of child care...



Well, any behavior model is going to work smashingly with anyone who does not have "behavioral issues".


This
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Old Yesterday, 02:39 PM
 
947 posts, read 593,944 times
Reputation: 1526
Quote:
Originally Posted by rere900 View Post
Please! Your taking my statement and turning it into something totally different. Nice try though. He didn't throw hours long tantrums. He didn't cry for 120+ minutes. Maybe when I asked him what was wrong he didn't speak because he could not explain something to me he didn't understand! Ever think of that logic?? Once we got home he was still disappointed for a while because he kept saying, "I didn't get a star" He was not having a tantrum or crying uncontrollably.
What logic? That of a 4 year old needing to be ‘calmed down’ for two hours over not getting a sticker? I don’t see how I’m ‘turning’ anything. At least try to acknowledge the other side of this coin or we’ll just be having a ‘same story different day’ post from you a year from now. Or don’t - do you.

Your words again below:

Quote:
Originally Posted by rere900 View Post
My son was so upset, he could not even talk when I picked him up. I spent the next two hours at home trying to calm him down and all he could say was that he didn't get a star. I mean this is not something I want or him to go through every week or every other week.
ETA: The advice still stands whether he was actively crying and thrashing or in mute shock and didn’t say a word.... for two hours.... over a sticker.
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