Educators can help parents understand guidance strategies and the goal of positive guidance through discussions, modeling, and parent meetings. Educators have a responsibility to share their educational setting’s philosophy of positive guidance. Read the following scenarios that describe an interaction with an educator and a parent.
Scenario 1: Julia’s parent, Barbara
Barbara is a busy professional with a stressful job at a bank. Her four-year-old daughter, Julia, attends a full-day preschool program. Barbara is friendly to educators and has expressed difficulties with Julia’s behaviors at home. Barbara has said that Julia “doesn’t listen,” “talks back,” and is “disrespectful.” The educator does not see these behaviors on a regular basis in the educational environment. Julia is easily redirected when displaying mostly age-appropriate inappropriate behavior. One day when Barbara picks up Julia, she says to the educator, “Just tell me if Julia wasn’t good today. I told her she would be in Time Out until bedtime if she didn’t get a good report.”
Scenario 2: Robert’s parents, Marvin and Jewel
Marvin and his wife, Jewel, are 67 years old. They are raising their three-year-old grandson, Robert. Robert’s parents have moved away and have little contact with him. Robert has a Feisty temperament and attends a full-day preschool program. Educators are patient with Robert when responding to his behavior. For example, when Robert jumped off a chair, the educator instructed Robert to return the chair to the table. It was explained that jumping was for outside and unsafe in the classroom. The educators are making plans to include more gross motor activities within the classroom schedule and closely monitor Robert. Jewel calls the educator during rest time. She states, “I need you to start spanking Robert when he is bad. This is what we do at home, and it is the only thing that works. You can take him into the bathroom away from other children.”
Initial Post: After reading the scenarios above, choose one scenario and share what could be said to support the family and the goals they have for their child. Address the following:
In the moment, what could you say to share to guidance strategies and the overall goal of guidance?
How would you follow up with the family to check progress and further share the guidance process?
Tip: It is often helpful to begin a conversation with families with a supportive statement to put them at ease. Try beginning the conversation with, “I understand…” or “I hear you saying…”