YW3CA’s Early Education Center commits to daily routines and rituals in line with Conscious Discipline, a social emotional curriculum, one of these routines: Wishing Well.
In the fall of 2018, we adopted a social-emotional (SEL) curriculum which supports peace, justice and dignity, important elements of our mission statement. Conscious Discipline helps teachers in achieving a better understanding of children’s brain development (at what age they can reasonably be expected to practice a skill) and the brain state (the emotional state of the brain that drives behavior). A teacher’s role is to help teach missing skills to enable children to successfully deal with their feelings now and in the future. Teachers also learn ways to be aware of his/her own inner state. In this SEL curriculum, trusting relationships with teachers form the foundation of safety.
Practicing Conscious Discipline in early education environments improves the quality of student-teacher interactions, improves the social and emotional behavior of students, reduces aggression in classrooms, increases student academic achievement and readiness, improves the organizational climate, and enhances parenting effectiveness.
We have many children who are still learning what to do with big emotions they feel when things do not go their way. The best way to support each other is to WISH WELL. We use our social emotional curriculum, Conscious Discipline, and its tools to support us whenever a child has STRONG EMOTIONS. As a bystander, we understand situations such as these can sometimes seem out of control. We must be in control of our own emotions to support children with theirs. We know families and other adults want to help, so to be helpful, do your best to view what is occurring from the perspective of positive intent. Positive intent involves taking what you see and limiting your negative thoughts about what you’ve witnessed.
As an example, You see a child yelling at a teacher. The child says, “Get away from me. Stop touching me.” They may swear and try to run. Instead of thinking … ‘That child is so rude. They need to learn manners!’ or ‘That child’s mother/father needs to do a better job parenting’, you tell yourself, ‘That child doesn’t know what to do when things do not go their way.’
- Refrain from saying anything negative about what is occurring
- Tell any children or adults who appear concerned, ‘Your teachers are here to keep you safe. They have things under control.’ And trust that they do!
- Refrain from physically approaching the child/ren and teacher/staff person. If the person who is supporting the child needs your help, trust they will ask.
- Wish the child and adult well.
“Wishing well is a way to instantly calm ourselves and offer love and caring to others when there is no physically tangible way to offer them help.” (We have taught all the children in our program (2 and above) how to WISH WELL and use this daily.)
To WISH WELL:
- Put your hands over your heart
- Take a deep breath
- Pause and picture something precious in your mind
- Breathe out while opening your arms and sending those precious, loving thoughts out to the person you are wishing well
- If you prefer to just think positive thoughts, this is helpful too.
Remember, WISHING WELL helps the children and adults in our School Family. Just the smile sending different chemicals to the brain and helps with the stress hormone release at difficult times like these.
WISHING WELL is just one of our three Early Education Team Commitments.
- Offer daily connection to each other with dignity and wish well.
- Create a safe physical and emotional environment for each other.
- Maintain our composure and willingly accept feedback from each other.
For more information about our Early Education Center, click here! To inquire about enrolling your child/ren, contact Kathleen Seeley, Senior Early Education Center Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 610-323-1888.