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Hi all,

Bit of background - small pre school, 2-5yrs, all children work together.

I have the most adorable, boy who started my setting in sept (Child 1). When he began he was 2yrs 3mnths. As with all my 2-3 yrs I have a staffing ratio of 1:2 sometimes 1:3.

Over the past few weeks I have had 4 parents coming upto me saying that there child didn't want to come in because of this boy.

One said that he hit him on the mat, another said he stands on his fingers one said he was scared of him.

I did explain to the parents the very low ratios we have and out of the 6 sessions, only 2 of them he is 1:3, 2 a 1:2 the others he is 1:1.

The only problem with this little boy is he has limited space awarness, which he is developing.

I tried an experiment at 4 snack times. Usually the daily helper puts out the names on the table but on these occasions I let the children sit where they wanted. 2 of the children who told their mums that they had an issue sat next to child 1.

Really worried that I am missing something. Have talked about it at mat time in a general chat about playing together etc.

 

Any other ideas.

 

Net x

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Well it seems you are doing the right things in talking out this to the children.Is their anything that triggers his behaviour.

Often children do invent stories about other children. I had an example of this the other day when a parents found a mark on their child, when they asked their child about it they named the culpit who had been absent all week.

Child 1 may have accidently trodden on anothers fingers. Also parents can sometimes talk about other children in a negative way to other parents and the children do pick up on this. Sometimes children do try and wind a fidgetty child up. If child 1 can't keep in his own space would the children be better sitting on chairs or large carpet squares.I hope you sort this out because you may find that other children will distance themselves from him in the future.

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Hi net,

 

It always saddens me when children get "labelled" by their peers and adults. I agree with other comments that even if children are not attending they are still deemed "guilty" of the crime. Unfortunately adults tend to "never forget" yet peers forget very quickly, as shown by the fact that the children chose to sit next to Child 1 at snack time.(I've never understood why adults put out name labels and decide who should sit next to who-maybe a subject we could discuss :o ).

 

When I have had this experience ( which I think is very common in all settings) I tend to concentrate my efforts on the children ( and parents)who are "affected" by the "labelled" child. I work on their self esteem and confidence, to enable them to tell child 1 when he is invading their space. I encourage them that it is ok to tell if they can't handle the situation themselves and then help them to get into dialogue with child 1, to help them tell him how they want him to behave. This hopefully builds their confidence, that the situation can be controlled in the setting and therefore they don't feel the need to tell their parents - who they know will always come to their rescue.

 

To help the parents feel better I tell them about all the times child 1 has played nicely with their child, I also tell them, if there has been an incident, how their child handled it well ( giving a positive conclusion to a negative incident) and how they can help their child to stand up for themselves in an appropriate way at the time of the incident by endorsing our efforts and saying to their child, did you forget to tell child 1 to be careful or did you tell the teacher ? ( trying not to encourage telling tales).

 

I had this problem when my grandson attended preschool, he was as boisterous and sometimes as uncaring as any young boy can be at this age, but some parents felt that I favoured him and let him get away with certain behaviour because he was my grandson. We worked on developing friendships within the group, there is no stronger pressure ( be it negative or positive) than peer pressure, so build the positive relationships. My daughter, who also worked at the preschool would get very upset that her son was labelled, but began to understand why, she helped by inviting her sons friends to his birthday party and then some of them to tea. Then all the children wanted to be Ben's friend and get invited to tea. My daughter is now the "advocate" for all the labelled children ( because however much we try not to, even as experienced professionals, it is in our nature to expect certain behaviours, to label, we should recognise this and address it as soon as possible- it happens so subtly we don't always see it straight away.

 

I am sure you will look back in a few months and think, was it that bad? because no doubt once you have dealt with this situation another child will come along who is labelled as the "bully" and child 1 will appear as kind as an angel and have a circle of really close friends. :D

 

Do you have a "Bullying" policy, I know I was asked for one at my last Inspection, though I haven't written one up yet. Maybe having your procedures written down may also help parents to understand.

 

Peggy

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Hi Peggy and bubblejack,

Yes we do have a bullying policy. The problem is, what the children see as bullying, is purely little boy with no limited space awareness. I have had one of the mums stay in the session to see and she is now converted. I have also started to take child 1 shoes off as they are normally quite bulky. I feel a soft sock is better than big boot.

 

Think I will just have to ride the mini storm and just invite the parents into see.

 

Thanks for your words of wisdom.

By the way, any of you doing a christmas nativity concert.

 

Net x

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My staff have decided to do "Nativity" this year, previous years we've just acted out songs with a christmas theme.

 

My last memory of a Nativity was about 17 yrs ago when the boys were bored and pulled the cotton wool out of the sheeps *u* xD A girl member of the "choir" had the LOUDEST TONE DEAF VOICE and crucified Twinkle Little star. Another boy ( labelled the "rough" one- had a lovely singing voice, so we planned for him to sing solo-great in rehearsals but when he stood on the stage ready to sing he saw his mum laugh at him and refused point blank to continue- not that I blamed him :o ).

Baby jesus was dropped, head first and Mary started to cry. At the end as I led the ensemble, in a line, out of the hall, on viewing the video afterwards, I noticed that the boy behind me was smacking my *u* repeatedly for the journey through the audience, all the way out. :(

 

As I am semi-retired I shall let my staff "enjoy" their nativity experience and cross my fingers (and toes) that all will go well. Mind you it is the funny things that children do that make it all worthwhile, and I do look back fondly on that one and only Nativity play I was so fortunate to supervise over. :)

 

Peggy

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Yes we are doing ours on Thursday in the church. Our church is through an inter-connecting door so we had a dress rehearsall today.Two of our wisemen decided not to perform not a problem to us but mums were devastated. Joseph frowned all the time at Mary so it should be fun on Thursday. We always do a nativity and invite parents . I know the children will be fine.I just worry that the parents will behave. One year the vicar told them off because they STOOD on the pews in the church. This year we have a new vicar but he told me that he is planning to show the children a d.v.d of Cliff Richards doing some sort of nativity so :o

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Well I have mine tomorrow.

We are using the drama room in the main school and have not been able to use it for a dress rehersal. My mary is lovely but is a bit of a "veruca" from charlie and the chocolate factory when mum is around. Mum insisted that she had lines to say. She is 4yrs. My Joseph is 2and a half and is the only boy who would participate. I have angel Gab, no other angels, 1 star, 2 wise men, 1 shepherd, and an innkeeper. Somehow we have got a father christmas, mother christmas, 5 reindeer and 28 carol singers.

Cannot wait. We did a mini rehersal today with one of the mums watching. After the rehersal she sat mouth open and said she was speechless. NOt in a good way either.

As we all know, it doesn't matter what you plan, as long as the kids enjoy themselves and I remind every parent of this.

 

But going back to original post, about my child 1. One of the mums came up to me today and said her little girl had said child 1 had hit her yesterday and has just told her he had hit her again today. She wasn't happy, even more so when I told her that child 1 had not been in yesterday or today. When she re asked her child who had hurt her, the child said no one !!!!!!!!

 

Net x

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