Discipline Policy

My behavioral expectations of children and the discipline methods I use are as follows

Behavioral Expectation for Infants: Ages Birth through 11 Months

  • They cry when, under stress, expressing a need, or trying to communicate.
  • They may cry when dropped off because they have separation anxiety.
  • They put everything in their mouth because they explore through taste.
  • They feel and touch everything because they learn and explore by using their five senses.
  • They like to be held because it makes them feel secure.
  • They become attached to family and caregivers because they trust them.
  • They show pleasure when learning new skills because they enjoy praise.
  • They become bored if they do not receive adequate attention or stimulation.

Discipline Methods Used for Infants: Ages Birth through 11 Months

  • Infants need to be attended to when they are crying. This is because stress in infants releases a chemical called cortisol in their brain. Cortisol makes the brain vulnerable to a process that destroys brain cells and reduces the number of connections between brain cells.
  • Infants in stress can be calmed by picking them up, singing to them or talking to them in a calm voice, using their name.
  • Infants are not able to understand or benefit from time out.
  • Redirecting infants to another activity, including by placing them in a different area if needed, is useful when there is a behavioral issue.

Behavioral Expectation for Toddlers: Ages 12 Months to 24 Months, and Two-year-olds

  • They put everything in their mouth because they explore through taste.
  • They feel and touch everything because they learn and explore by using their five senses.
  • They may cry, hit, or bite to get their way, express emotions, or to communicate with others (they do not yet have the verbal skills to communicate their frustrations by talking).
  • They may show signs of anxiety during change, and when their parents leave. This is demonstrated by withdrawing, crying, clinging, and wanting to be held.
  • They enjoy exploring objects with others because they want to establish relationships.
  • They are discovering and learning to assert their independence, so they often say, "No!"
  • They frequently use the word "mine" and are not yet able to share well. They want to play with others, but do not yet know how.
  • They exhibit mood swings and are not yet able to manage their emotions.
  • They enjoy peer play and joint exploration.

Discipline Methods used for Toddlers: Ages 12 Months to 24 Months, and Two-year-olds

  • For toddlers and twos, redirection is more effective than time out. Redirection means calmly redirecting children's attention or moving children away from a problem area or activity to a new area or activity.
  • If behavior problems persist, providers may want to evaluate the environment to see if children are being over stimulated or if there is not enough space for children. Providers should also check to see if more toys of the same kind are needed, because toddlers and twos are not old enough to understand sharing and taking turns with toys.
  • Praise and positive reinforcement can also work very well with this age group.
  • Another good way to help toddlers and two year olds learn how to play appropriately with other is for adults to model appropriate behavior.

Behavioral Expectation for Preschoolers: 3-5 Year-Olds Preschoolers

  • They have a desire to please adults.
  • They are learning to take turns and share.
  • They may have outbursts of emotions.
  • They are independent, and do well when given choices.
  • They often tell on others, to prove that they know the rule and because they want others to know they know the rules.
  • They are learning social skills, like sharing and taking turns. They like to play in small groups, but may need some guidance doing this as they learn social skills.
  • They have difficulty waiting very long, regardless of the promised outcome.
  • They exhibit negative and positive behavior in order to get attention.

Discipline Methods used for Preschoolers: 3-5 Year-Olds Preschoolers

  • Preschoolers benefit from having a few simple classroom rules. For example: Walking Feet, Listening Ears, Soft Hands, Inside Voices.
  • When a behavior problem arises, adults can use this as a teaching opportunity and calmly remind children of the classroom rules.
  • Positive reinforcement and redirection also works well with this age group. For example, if a preschooler is throwing blocks, even after being reminded of the rule, he or she can be required to leave the block area and choose a different activity for now.

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