What ‘That Kid’ Is Trying To Tell You


Imagine a circle of cute four year olds, sitting as quietly and attentively as a group of four year olds can, waiting for their teacher to join them. All except for one that is. You know the one. The one who never stops talking, never stops fidgeting, never stops poking at the child sitting next to them.

I sigh a big [huge] ‘here we go again’ sigh, just before I am about to tell them in a stern voice to stop banging their feet on the floor, and to sit on their bottom like everybody else instead of lying on the floor. Trouble was, I knew what would follow. They would half heartedly listen and, seconds later, start doing something else that would attract my negative attention.

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So instead, I lay on my tummy and started banging my feet on the floor, copying their every move. They stopped, looked at me in astonishment, grinned and then continued banging their feet on the floor. Then my two assistants joined in. Then all the other children joined in.

What could have been yet another battle that no one was going to win, turned into a group of children and adults who giggled, laughed, grinned, squealed with excitement and continued their activities lying on the floor having fun. My little action-seeker got the attention they needed. The children had fun, the adults had fun, but best of all, the tension had evaporated and the day began in a happy, loving mood.

You can find other coping strategies for stressful situations at  Conscious Discipline 

Written by: Juliet McDonald, E.C.E 

Photo: Emily Winter

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