Our behaviour policy begins with nurturing self respect in both the children and staff. We do this within a secure environment where boundaries and expectations are consistently set and reinforced. We encourage compassion and care for the feelings of other people and respect for property. Our focus is on positive behaviour, demonstrating it, pointing it out, and rewarding it.
We recognize that as adults, we are role models of the behaviour we want the children to learn.
We encourage ownership of behaviour, for example, in a case of conflict between two children, we ask both children, ‘What did you do?’ At all times will we will ensure we are giving each child time to be heard. Equally, we do not necessarily expect them to be able to answer the question, ‘Why did you do that?’ If the child cannot easily articulate what has triggered a certain behaviour, we try to identify what needs are not being met for the child and address the more immediate triggers.
We will preserve the child’s dignity using empathy with them (‘I can see how you must have been cross’) whilst redirecting them to acceptable behaviour (‘but you can’t hit people. It hurts.’) On no occasion will we aim to humiliate the child.
We actively listen to what the child says ensuring we’ve done what we can to explore their feelings.
We strive to tell the children what they are doing that is good, such as ‘good turn taking’, sometimes more specific like, ‘Good you stopped and waited.’
We gently make sure the child knows what they are doing that is unacceptable, for example, ‘you put sand in her hair’. We may need to go on to remind them of our boundaries, ‘we can’t put sand in people’s hair.’ These boundaries may then need to be reinforced, ‘If you put sand in her hair we’ll have to bring you away from the sand.’ Before that consequence though the adult would aim to redirect the child’s play by perhaps introducing something new to the sand and challenging their ideas.
We assume any attention we give children, good or bad, is satisfactory for them. So we strive to only attend to behaviour we like. To that end we might withdraw and redirect a child from a negative situation giving attention only to the child behaving positively.
We refer only to the behaviour, not to any emotions connecting us to the child, at all times showing respect for the individual child.
We judge when a child needs time and space to calm down and reflect. We will only discuss behaviour or incidents when we sense the child is receptive.
Where a child is finding a task difficult we will try to help them overcome any feelings of inadequacy or failure.
To help provide a secure environment, we will:
· set clear boundaries and expectations
· offer stimulus and respond to their reactions to other stimuli
· make suggestions
· provide suitable play opportunities and encourage sustained concentration on their chosen play activity
· organise materials and equipment appropriately for their use
· extend play to develop key social skills
We take account of the varying stages of development amongst the children and adjust our expectations accordingly. We also help the children to understand the consequences of their behaviour by setting them out clearly and following up consistently.
Staff do not use any form of physical intervention unless it is necessary to prevent personal injury to the child, other children, an adult or serious damage to property. Where physical intervention is used to manage a child’s behaviour this must be recorded and parents/carers will be informed that same day. We record any such details on an incident form.
This information includes the following:
· name of the child
· name of the staff member
· previous intervention techniques used
· date time and place
· circumstances and factors leading up to the incident
· nature of physical intervention used
· names of any witnesses
· injuries that may have occurred
· any further action and parents’ signatures
If a child’s behaviour is giving cause for concern we quickly involve parents so that we may all work together towards a positive outcome. On occasion, and with parent’s permission we may consult outside agencies for advice and support but again, of critical importance is that we work together with parents to achieve a sustained positive outcome.
To this end, all staff will have read and understood this policy and contributed as appropriate.
Katharine Wright is the person nominated to ensure our Behaviour policy is implemented and reviewed each year. She will also attend appropriate training and development to keep herself and staff up to date with behaviour management advice and information.
Links to legislation:
• Children Act 1989 and 2004.
• Conventions on the Rights of the Child, UNICEF 1989.
• Data Protection Act 1998.
• Employment Equality (Religion of Belief) Regulations 2003.
• Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003.
• Every Child Matters – Change for Children 2004.
• Freedom of Information Act 2000.
• Race Relations Act 1976.
• Race Relations Amendment Act 2000.
• Sex Discriminations Act 1975 and 1986.
• Sex Discrimination (Gender Reassignment) Regulations 1999.
• The Human Rights Act 2000.
Date policy written: Aug 2011
Reviewed: Oct 2011
Reviewed: Sept 2013
LAST REVIEW DATE: NOV 2014
Signed: ________________________ Signed: _______________________
Marion McMullan Katharine Wright