Behavior Guidance Policy
The heart of Quality Child Care Early Learning Center’s Discipline Philosophy is to encourage self-control, self-esteem, and respect for all children and adults. For this reason, we are training our staff to implement the principles of “Conscious Discipline” by Dr. Becky Bailey. This program takes a different approach to traditional classroom management. It is based on the basic idea that developing discipline with children instead of applying discipline to them, will help them become more emotionally healthy and happy adults.
The program is designed to help teachers take everyday discipline issues and turn them into teachable moments that convey the importance of impulse control, anger management, and conflict resolution. Conscious Discipline gives children the tools to understand that their emotions are not only important and deserving of attention, but they are also controllable and the power to control them lies within the child. We are striving to teach children how to progress from physical or verbal aggression to calm self-regulation, how to make better choices with cooperation and compassion, and the importance of respecting and empathizing with others.
We would encourage you to check out the website www.consciousdiscipline.com to see how Dr. Bailey’s brain research is changing the way we think about discipline and classroom management.
We believe that all domains of learning are supported during play and through strong, positive interactions with adults. Promoting healthy social and emotional development, including self-control, is one of the fundamental responsibilities our program.
The preschool period is a critical time for children to learn to control their thoughts, feelings, attention, impulses, and behavior. They are learning how to get along with others and how to be a friend. Children are not born with these skills. Teachers and caregivers must teach social and emotional skills just as they teach washing hands or learning colors and shapes. We know that when children are given the opportunities and support to develop (learn, practice, discuss, etc.), self-control and other social and emotional skills, it gives them the foundation needed for academic and life success.
When any child in our program, including ABC students, presents with challenging behavior, teaching staff shall follow the standards of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC):
- Observe the children, and then identify events, activities, interactions and other factors that predict and may contribute to challenging behavior.
- Rather than focus only on eliminating the behavior, teaching staff shall focus on teaching the child social, communication, and emotional regulation skills and using environmental modifications, activity modifications, adult or peer support and other teaching strategies to support the child’s appropriate behavior.
- Teaching staff shall respond to challenging behavior, including physical aggression, in a manner that provides for the safety of the child and the safety of others in the classroom. Our response will be calm, respectful and provide the child with information on what is acceptable behavior and what is not.
- We will document the challenging behaviors and the intervention methods that were attempted in a behavior tracking log.
- Teacher-parent discussions regarding a child’s behavior shall be held in private and shall focus on working as a team to develop and implement an individualized plan that supports the child’s inclusion and success.
- If necessary, intervention shall ensure each child has access to professional services, such as referrals to the educational cooperative behavioral specialist, the ADE-funded regional support network for early autism identification, community mental health center and/or a private therapist.
We support this development through:
- We provide children with interesting materials and engage them in activities that are appropriate for their age to keep them focused and attentive.
- We develop schedules that meet the needs of young children by avoiding long periods of wait time without activity.
- Our schedule is flexible enough to follow the children’s interests as well as their cognitive, physical, and biological needs. We do our best to not let any child get bored or disinterested.
- We work to develop a relationship with each individual child, including those needing higher levels of support.
- Teachers always speak to children in a calm tone, especially during redirections.
- We help children put words to their emotions. (For example, “Billy, I can tell you were mad when James took your block.”)
- We use stories about young children in social situations to teach healthy social skills.
- Communicate regularly with staff to ensure consistency in guidance between home and school
- Partners with us and allow us time to work with all children, including those needing higher levels of support
- Understand and acknowledge that we do not expel children as they are learning these skills. We strive to serve individual needs while ensuring the safety of young children
- To best serve children, we may need to partner with social and emotional experts to help give a child the best foundation for academic and life success
- We ask parents to communicate regularly with staff to ensure consistency in guidance between home and school.
- Parents understand and acknowledge that we do not expel children as they are learning these skills. We strive to serve individual needs of each child, while ensuring the safety of young children.
- To best serve children, we may need to partner with social and emotional experts to help give a child the best foundation for academic and life success.
We have found that behavior concerns usually indicate that a child needs more time, support, and practice to develop their social and emotional skills. When serious concerns arise, we will partner with parents and professionals who specialize in supporting children’s social and emotional health.
When a child continues to be unable to control their actions, one method we use is called “safe place.”When children are upset, angry, or being disruptive, they may be sent to or asked if they would like to go to the “safe place.” This is a quiet spot in which they can allow themselves to take the time to relax, breathe, and try to get their emotions under control. Teachers will continue to watch children while they are in the “Safe Place” to make sure they are not hurting themselves or others. They will encourage the child to talk about their feelings and help with calming techniques so the child will be able to return to the classroom setting.
If a child is unable to use these calming techniques and continues to be disruptive, the teacher will then notify the office and the director will be called in to help the child. We might also reach out to parents so they can speak with the child and/or be notified of the circumstances.
If further guidance is required, actions taken will always be individualized,consistent, and appropriate to each child’s level of understanding. No physical punishment of any kind will be administered on QCC property. This policy restricts parents and staff from using physical punishment on their own children while on QCC property. In addition, staff may not yell at, shame, or humiliate a child in any way. Our goal is to correct children’s behavior in a way that will help mold and perfect a child’s mental faculties or moral character. The terms “bad” or “naughty” shall not be used about a child.
The following steps will be completed when a child must be removed temporarily for challenging behaviors that constitute an imminent danger to the child or others:
- Make a referral to BehaviorHelp and the agency responsible for early childhood special education services in the local area. If a child’s behavior is such that it necessitates temporary removal on a repeated basis, there should be sufficient documentation for consideration of special education services.
- Maintain documentation on file of the outcomes of the incident, subsequent parent conference, and plan developed that includes appropriate intervention strategies. The purpose of the parent conference is to develop a plan jointly with the family and available resources, to address the specific behaviors which constitute an imminent danger (recurring violence, behavior, or aggression).
ABC discipline procedures
If a child in question has a disability and is in the process or has been identified under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), the ABC program shall follow state special education rules and regulations governing suspension/expulsion.
If an ABC student must be temporarily removed from our program due to behavioral issues, we will notify the DHS and the ABC Program Specialist via email within 24 hours. We will include notice of the action taken and the specific reasons for the removal as an imminent danger to the child or others.
Biting is a normal part of early childhood development. Babies and toddlers bite for a variety of reasons, such as teething or exploring a new toy or object with their mouth ("mouthing"). As they begin to understand cause-and-effect, they also might bite a person to see if they can get a reaction.
Biting also can be a way for toddlers to get attention or express how they're feeling. Frustration, anger, and fear are strong emotions and toddlers lack the language skills to deal with them. So if they can't find the words they need quickly enough or can't articulate how they're feeling, they may resort to biting as a way of saying, "Pay attention to me!" or "I don't like that!"
Biting tends to occur most often between the first and second birthday. Biting is a normal part of early childhood development, however, biting that continues past two and a half to three years of age is not appropriate. Parents may be called to pick up their child from school and may be excluded for the day if he or she continuously exhibits this behavior past the age of two and a half. Please note that refunds/credits shall not be issued for days in which the child was sent home for behavior issues.