Once upon a time I taught preschool in an actual classroom! One morning one of my students came into the classroom in a disruptive mood, put himself under a table in the back of the classroom. I went back to him and said, "Giovanni, how can Ms. Joni help you to behave better in our classroom?" His response was the simplest explanation and took me back. He said, "teach me"
I had a conference with his parents and we came up with a behavior chart, a reward chart and discussed what it means to have good behavior. So many times we become engrossed in something and take for granted that a child knows how to behave, what it means or what is expected of them.
As parents, it's vital to be on the same page. Discuss with your partner your expectations for your children, try not to play 'Good Cop v s. Bad Cop' because this divides the child. A child looks up to you, trusts you and most likely wants to be like you. When you show your children team work and have open communications in your family unit, this builds respect and trust which builds a strong foundation. For an example, when our boys were little, my husband thought it would be fine for the boys to use the outdoors as a bathroom. I disagreed! Call me a prude, not that they didn't get to experience that freedom as a little boy, but, I didn't think it was a healthy habit for all times. So, we discussed when they could, like when we were camping, but, once we were back into 'civilization' they were to use the indoor facilities!!
Once you've agreed on what it looks like to have good behavior, go ahead and discuss it with your children. Perhaps make a visual chart of what good behavior looks like using old magazines or newspapers let your children tear out pictures of children with good behavior. Find pictures of children having good behavior at a restaurant, at school, playing a team sport, talking with siblings, etc. This will help your children understand the words you use. This worked well in our classroom, too!
Below are some simple activities you can do with your children to help reinforce good behaviors with Behavior Bear. I always learned better through an activity, I'm not much of a reader, I'd rather do an activity, get my hands dirty and wrap them around the physical word in order for me to internalize the meaning. Your children may be the same or different. Read to them, allow them to read books on a topic, make it a habit to discuss the topic with your children, let them write about it or draw about it or talk about it and this will build their knowledge of the topic, trust in your co-operation and help form better communication skills, too. Now, I'm not pretending to be an expert on any topic, but, I do know that these characters make a difference, they are relatable and they even earned an award! Go ahead and make a puppet, a headband, a poster and more, let Behavior Bear come through your door!
Another tip I'd like to share is to print out Behavior Bear, write your child's name on the pencil. I like to print it out on card stock. There is a black and white one on Behavior Bear's page online for your child to color, personalize it! I actually have a small laminator and have laminated the characters, not necessary. Now, put this character on a key chain, a zipper, a Popsicle stick, etc. Take Behavior Bear with you wherever you may roam to reinforce this good behavior in and out of your home!
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Married with children since 1981. Love working with children and sharing the Characters of Character.