Discipline vs. Punishment
Discipline and punishment are often considered to mean the same thing, but in fact they are completely different concepts. The word "Discipline" originally comes from a Latin word meaning "to teach". Thus, discipline means teaching children appropriate and acceptable behavior. This gives children the reasons why they are to behave a certain way. Once children understand the reasons behind behavior, discipline techniques give them the opportunity to gain self-control. This is the ultimate goal of discipline and our goal here at Twin Oaks.
Punishment, on the other hand, may be defined as inflicting negative consequences to control behavior through fear and intimidation. Punishment does not teach children acceptable behavior or self control and can result in poor self esteem for the child. In using punishment children learn how they are not to behave, but not what is an acceptable alternative.
We at Twin Oaks are committed to teaching children good behavior through positive discipline. Corporal punishment or threats of it are not allowed at Twin Oaks. Punishment will not be associated with food, naps or bathroom procedures.
Appropriate Discipline Techniques
|When a child is acting inappropriately in one area, our teachers will place (direct) them to another area, i.e.: "Tearing the book pages are not allowed in the book center. You may go to the Legos and play there until story time." This technique is usually more effective with toddlers, but preschoolers do respond to it.|
|Discipline means separating the child from the behavior, acceptable or not. It involves unconditional love for children. For acceptable behavior we will use comments such as "I like the way you cleaned up the puzzle area", not "You are a good boy for cleaning up puzzles". For unacceptable behavior our teachers understand that it is not the child that is unacceptable, but the behavior. Our staff uses comments such as, "Biting is not allowed, you should talk to your classmates instead", rather than "You are such a bad child".|
|Children can easily tune out adults after hearing negative comments such as "no", "stop", and "don't ", etc. too often. Our teachers will use comments such as "Thank you for walking", instead of "Quit running".|
|Our staff will give children two acceptable choices that are agreeable to the teacher. Such as "Would you like to play in Legos or Puzzles?" Comments that have an unacceptable choice or an "or else!" are not used and are contrary to our discipline philosophy.|
|Children will learn if left to experience the logical consequences of their actions. Such as "Tearing the pages form the book means we can't read a story from it."|
|Using humor when an accident occurs or in other appropriate situations relieves stress in the children and the staff.|
|Children must learn the limits of certain behaviors. Any argument or long discussions give the child an indication that these are open to discussion.|
|New activities and transition times can be difficult for adults and children. Our staff plans ahead to prepare the children for these times. Such as "We use our inside voices in the Library", or "Let's sing a song while we wait".|
|When time out is used correctly, it is very effective in helping children learn about behavior and how to control their behavior. Toddlers and two year olds generally do not understand time out so we do not use it at this age.
When used; one minute per year is the guideline.
Time Out is meant to give the child a chance to calm down and reflect on what has happened. A special area is provided in each classroom for a time out area. It places children away from the group but within supervision. After the time out period, which is determined by how long it takes the child to calm down, not a certain number of minutes decided by the teacher, our teacher will then talk with the child and help them learn from the experience.
Twin Oaks strives to maintain a safe, fun and exciting learning atmosphere. In the event of a child whose behavior is continually disruptive to this atmosphere we will require a conference with the parent. We are associated with professionals who specialize in correcting this type of behavior and will be glad to refer the parent to one if necessary. Twin Oak's childcare staff will work very hard to assist the parent and/or professional in correcting this behavior.
After the child's first four weeks of attendance, Twin Oaks will schedule an informal or formal meeting with the parent to discuss the child's acceptance of and suitability to the program at Twin Oaks daycare. If the staff feels that the child has not acclimated to the center or is not suitable for our program, we will discuss this with the parent and seek ways to correct the situation. Twin Oaks preschool reserves the right to dismiss any child that the staff feels we will be unable to assist. The parent will be given two weeks notice to find other care for the child.
We encourage parents to feel free to schedule a meeting with our staff and management at any time to discuss any matter concerning their child.Contact a Twin Oaks Childcare Administrator
Twin Oaks Childcare will do everything possible to correct problems with a child. It is very rare that we are unable to do so, but if the staff feels that we cannot correct the problem. Twin Oaks daycare reserved the right to dismiss the child from the center. Advance notification will be given to the parents.
Our Staff Training on Discipline
- Discipline matters are discussed at every staff meeting
- We supply our staff with training videos and other written material
- Our staff attends seminars as they become available
Biting occurs at a specific developmental period in a child's life. It is an age/stage related occurrence and generally happens during the Toddler years.
Why Children Bite
- Toddlers are ORAL beings and put everything into their mouths. This is one way they learn about their world. Unfortunately this may also include other children.
- At this stage in their development toddlers do not have the ability to discriminate between animate and inanimate objects.
- Toddlers may bite for the ATTENTION that they receive.
- Too many children in close proximity may cause a toddler to bite.
- Most toddlers need a certain amount of space around them and their toys and do not welcome another child's intrusion. The toddler may bite to stop a child from taking his toys or to maintain his personal territory.
- Many toddlers begin biting when they are teething as this helps to relieve the uncomfortable feeling of new teeth developing.
- Toddlers have not developed social skills nor yet learned self-control. Biting may occur as an immediate reaction to a problem with another child, as toddlers cannot verbalize their problems.
Techniques Used to Prevent Biting
- Group size in the toddler room is kept as low as possible.
- We supply numerous appropriate toys on which children can bite.
- We will attach a teether in a safe manner to a frequent biter's clothing and encourage him to bite it.
- We will work with our toddlers to teach them the words to express their frustrations.
- A frequent biter will have a caregiver assigned to him to remain in close proximity to the child and to intervene if a biting situation occurs.
What Twin Oaks Will Do After a Biting Incident
- The caregivers will focus their attention on the victim, not the biter.
- The bite will be cleaned with antiseptic and a bandage applied, even if the skin is not broken.
- An ice pack will be applied to the bite for a few moments to help relieve any pain.
- The caregiver will have the biter to gently stroke the victim, so both children will learn appropriate ways to touch and relate to each other.
- An injury report will be filled out on each and every bite.
What Twin Oaks Will NOT Do After a Biting Incident
- The child will not be physically punished in any way, nor will we bite the child back.
- The child will not be removed from the center.
- Staff members will not put anything into the child's mouth.
- Staff members will not withdraw love or food, or keep the child in isolation.
- Due to confidentiality rules we cannot and will not reveal the name of the biter to the victim's parents.