I am a trainee play therapist! The door has always been open for me to continue my studies and I have finally found the course I want to pursue! It has been an amazing journey of self-discovery. I have learned so much and I am filled with the desire to learn so much more! Part of the course is to complete 100 clinical hours and I have started clinical work in a centre which has an early intervention program for children with special needs.
I am homeschooling a 4-year-old. I quit my job at the preschool because I wanted to focus on my studies and clinical work. Not wanting too much commitment, I am homeschooling 3 days a week at the moment. It has been so much fun and I am enjoying the process.
I am still teaching part-time at TweedleWink. I am excited by the new things they add every year. I do love their unique philosophy and teaching method. Can't believe I have been teaching here for more than 7 years! I love all the children I teach and it just doesn't feel like work sometimes.
Overall, I am really REALLY enjoying my journey in 2017 so far. I am focused, driven, not stressed, well rested, and most importantly, doing it happily with all my heart!
Did you know that you have two "me's". When you choose your Great Me, your frequency lifts, you shine like the sun! When you choose your Little Me, your light dims and your frequency drops. But you can always take a deep breath. Blow out your Little Me as if you're blowing out a balloon. 1... 2... 3... Breathe in your Great Me. 1... 2... 3... Now, try again! You can choose which "Me" to be. I hope you choose your Great Me!
This is a great Character Building story that I use with my children. Everyone has days where they feel like choosing their Little Me. At times, all you need is to take a deep breath, calm down and try again. It is great to have the children visualise they are blowing balloons.
Rather than yell at children and get into a power struggle, or opposite, let the child get his/her way in everything, this Character-Building program helps the children think rationally of the consequences of choosing their Little Me. It ends positively, and children behave better when they feel better. Believe me, I've tried giving punitive time outs in the past when I was at my wits' end, but it didn't work. All I created was a situation where the child is upset AND I was upset.
So when your child is throwing a temper tantrum, encourage your child to think of consequences,
If you choose your Little Me, then the classroom would be messy and teachers and children will be sad. We would like to have a neat classroom. Let's blow out our Little Me's together. 1-2-3. Let's breathe in our Great Me's! Are you ready to choose your Great ME? (Big warm loving hug!)
Sometimes, I do it for myself. So that I have the patience to deal with the situation.
"When I was young, I was hit by my parents and I turned out fine."
"When I was young, we did not have any of these educational programs and classes and I turned out fine."
"When I was young, I didn't learn this and I turned out fine."
Well, when you were young, your parents did not have cell phones and internet and they turned out fine!
Like it or not, times are changing, and if the way you educate your child doesn't change, your child might miss out. Sure, he/she might turn out fine. But imagine if you read up on research and make INFORMED choices, how much better they could turn out?
People need to study and have degrees to build buildings or bridges. Is bringing up a child any less important than building roads?
The opposite of whacking your child is not letting your child climb on top of your head. You ought to strike a balance of a kind and firm discipline. I highly recommend reading up on positive discipline by Jane Nelsen.
I've seen kids who like to scold their friends. When I look at how the parent talks to the child, I know why. Children are parrots. They imitate EVERYTHING that we do. That's why it is so important for us as adults to be good role models for the children.
I've had parents comment,
"I really don't know how you do it. It's so difficult for me to deal with just one, and you have to deal with 20!"
Practicing yoga has helped me become more aware of my breathing. Take time to take a deeeeeeeeeeeeep breath when you feel your anger rising.
I bring lavender or chamomile tea to work. Thus, when I feel overwhelmed, I take a sip of tea, and ahhhh, I feel the stress melt away.
Talk face to face
Overseeing a number of kids is no easy task. Sometimes, I see a child at the other side of the room misbehaving. Although it seems easier to yell, it would be much better to walk up to the child face to face and talk to the child.
It is vital to ensure that you have sufficient rest so that you have the energy to be patient.
Here's a great website for some more tips from an amazing mum who decided to stop yelling at her kids:
It's the time of the year. One of the most difficult time of the year - for teachers, parents and children. A new beginning for many children. A new milestone - FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL.
It is not easy for children as they have to leave their secure homes and step into an unfamiliar environment and learn to trust a stranger (the teacher).
It is not easy for parents to see their children crying, and sometimes parents feel heartbroken to see their little babies go through this phase.
It is not easy for teachers - can you imagine juggling three crying children, and at the same time, ensure that the other children have your attention, too? At the beginning of the day, I have to make sure I have my caffeine and my chicken essence to give me extra energy to face the challenges.
Easing Separation Anxiety
The best way to ease separation anxiety is to bridge the gap between home and school. In school, we invite the parents to stay with the children for the first few days of school. This is so that the children can start to build relationship with the teachers in a secure environment.
Children may bring in their own toy from home as a security blanket. Parents can give a family photo so that the children feel connected too their families during the day. If the child is not settled, come early, so that the child is not separated for such a long period of time.
Parents have to trust the teachers to take care of the children. Sometimes, it's difficult, but you just have to let go. The more you linger, the more difficult it is for your child to settle down.
Over the years, I have experienced many types of reactions to separation. Every child is unique and behaves differently, but generally, these are the categories:
Some children have no issue at all in going to school. Bear in mind that every child have different attachment patterns. This does not mean your child loves you any less than the one rolling on the floor crying. These children love to come to school and are so busy playing that they do not even look up to say goodbye to their parents.
The Silent Crier
This child does not burst out crying, rather, the tears well up in the eyes and drop down sadly. This child needs lots of reassurance, but calms down easily. The key is distraction. After acknowledging the child's feelings, I distract the child with fun things - Let's do drawing! Wow, look at this book! Come, let's play with the dolls!! I had a child who loves songs, and whenever he cried, I'd sing, and he'd sing along through his tears.
The Child who Rolls on the Floor Crying
This is the challenging one, as when they start screaming, it affects the other children as well. This child usually needs one to one attention separately from the class. Some might even vomit (that's the reason I always have spare clothes with me in school). Step one - build trust. This child needs to form an attachment to a teacher. Once that happens, I would have a shadow, following me wherever I go - even to the toilet! Over time, the child will slowly get used to other teachers, too.
Different children take different lengths of time to settle down. Sometimes, they are simply not ready. I had a child who cried hysterically every day for hours for a month. We then decided that the child was simply not ready and advised the mum to give her some time away from school. Three months down the road, she tried again. On her first day back at school - she said goodbye to her mum without a single tear!! That shows that sometimes, they just need some time.
Advice for parents - work together with the teachers if you are concerned. Make sure you find a school where you can trust the teachers to take care of your child when your child is vulnerable.