The Art of Setting Limits_ by malj


									      Young Children Need Limits:
Why Saying “No” and Setting Limits on Behavior is
  Important to Child Development & Learning
                April 30, 2011

        Lucy DiMichele, Social Worker
       Louise Tallent, Dean of Students
Young Children Need Limits: Why Saying
“No” and Setting Limits on Behavior is
Important to Child Development & Learning
      ~In order for young children to succeed
academically, they need to understand the
meaning of “no”. This session provides an
overview of brain research and provides a
simple but effective strategy for setting limits on
behavior without the use of threats or
punishments. Audience participation is
•   Conference
•   Format
•   Certificates
•   Presenter Background
          “A Few Affect Many”
The Lake Central Education Foundation (LCEF)
  provided funding for this presentation, allowing
  purchase of resources to be used at Protsman &
  Bibich by the School Social Worker, the
  Home/School Facilitator & the Dean of Students.
Materials target:
What is the Ultimate Goal?
At conclusion, participants will be able to:
• Identify the difference between setting a limit
  and issuing an ultimatum.
• Recognize the importance of using logic, not
  emotion, when dealing with misbehavior.
• Understand why kids prefer when parents
  impose limits on their behavior.
• Learn an effective 5-step approach to setting
    Why is Saying NO and Setting
       Limits Important?
• 20% of students who have behavior difficulties
  can negatively impact a classroom or an entire
  school culture.
• Giving teachers and parents tools to address
  these behaviors more effectively helps to
  ensure excellence in education.

Saying “NO” & Setting Limits on
 Behavior is Important to Child
  Development and Learning
• Foundational for developing children into
  productive adults/citizens is the simple
  word “NO”
• “No” builds the foundation for respecting:
   ~ Others
   ~ Self discipline
   ~ Integrity
   ~ Perseverance
Saying “NO” in a Yes Culture
• Culture of disrespect – 70 % of Americans say
• Children are more rude than 20-30 years ago
    The Stakes are High in a Yes Culture
•   Character capital
•   Attitudes of “entitlement”
•   Swollen expectations
•   College
•   Spending
•   Homeownership
•   Retirement
The Stakes are High in a Yes Culture
• Academic Achievement
  “No” (or lack of) affects school climate in
  three ways:
  1. Less energy for learning
  2. Undertones make learning difficult
  3. Academic expectations are lowered
    Development of The Yes Culture
•   Cultures develop through “The Story Tellers”
•   Mass media
•   Mass advertising
•   Extreme importance to read books to children
  Development of The Yes Culture
• Power of Advertising
  The goal: Sell products
• Perfecting advertising to bypass the rational
  part of thinking
• Now targets emotions
  Development of The Yes Culture
• Power of influencing the brain in 25-30 stops
• Average child will see forty thousand ads on
  TV in one year
• Exposed to 1 + Million advertisements per
• All the media shapes our children’s
  brains…shaping adults
  Development of The Yes Culture
• Yes messages:
   More – the more you have the happier you
  will be
   Fast – Instant Gratification
   Easy – Rewards with no effort or work
   Fun - Everything should be fun
      Early Childhood Educators
• Have the opportunity to influence a society

• Implementing a curriculum based on:
  *** How children learn
  *** Imbedding “No and Setting Limits”
       Self Discipline is a “Brain Thing”

• Occurs during the developmental
of years of ages 0-11

• Setting appropriate limits for children early in
  life helps “wire” their brains (neurons)….
  to learn self control….
  to learn necessary life skills.
      The Amazing Brain Basics
• The Brain is:
  An Electrical System
  Generates power to run a 25 watt light bulb
  Composed of cells or neurons – one hundred
  billion at birth
  Connecting neurons through repetition is
      The Amazing Brain Basics
• Connecting neurons or “wiring” occurs

1. Genetics – hard wiring-strong drives
2. Experiences – soft wiring of life experiences
3. With intensity during growth spurts
       The Amazing Brain Basics
4. A baby’s brain triples in size in the 1st year.

5. Brain growth continues through early 20s.
       The Amazing Brain Basics
• Windows of opportunity:
   A predictor of a child’s ability to read is the
   amount of one-to-one conversation with
   caregivers between birth & 3 years.
“If you want your children to be brilliant, read
   them more fairy tales. If you want them to be
   more brilliant, read them more fairy tales.”
                         Albert Einstein
The Toddlers-Preschoolers and
• Before 18 months of age, people are not
  capable of understanding limits &
• At 18 months children have intense curiosity
• There is a need to create new neuron brain
The Toddlers-Preschoolers and
• The goal of “No” for 18 month olds is to
  warn against danger.
• For the first 18 months…children hear,
  see, feel yes; as it should be.
• When no come into play, these children
  really do not understand…they have to be
   The Toddlers-Preschoolers and
• Understanding of no comes when the child
  begins to understand there are differences
  between themselves and others.
• The toddler begins to realize he/she is a
  separate person.
The Toddlers-Preschoolers and “NO
~Teaching no helps this age child learn to
  balance his/her will.

~ “What I want to do” versus “What I should

~ There is a balance of helping children become
  independent and helping them learn limits.
   The Toddlers-Preschoolers and
• Three things to do to promote self-discipline &
  ability to accept limits:
1.Learn other ways of saying no…
  stop, enough, later.
2.Tell the child what TO do

3.Turn the No into positives…you are setting the
 “NO” Increases Learning Time

• If children understand “no”, behaving
  respectfully, they have more time to learn
  rather than being disciplined
• When children know “no”, they can follow
What comes to mind when you think about
      “setting limits” on behavior?
                   Let’s Discuss the
• The main purpose of discipline is:
   – b. to teach
• What is the difference between setting limits and
  issuing threats?
   – Limits are reasonable, enforceable & can be used
     positively to teach. Threats often not enforceable.
• What does it mean to set a limit with a child?
   – Setting limits means providing the child with both choices
     and the consequences of those choices (consequences can
     be positive or negative).
                 Let’s Discuss the
• What is a logical consequence?
   – A consequence directly related to the choice that your
     child has made.
• Why, as parents, do we often go back to
  “punishment” instead of setting limits and using
  logical consequences?
   – d. All of the above
• On a scale from 1 to 10, how effective do you think
  you are at setting limits with your child?
   – This presentation offers proven strategies for limit setting.
         WHAT LIMITS ARE &
• Alternative to threats and punishment.
• Knowing there are limits to their behavior help
  kids feel safe (learning objective).
• Setting a limit is not the same as issuing an
  ultimatum (learning objective).
         WHAT LIMITS ARE &
• Limits offer choices w/consequences (+/-)
• The purpose of limits is to teach, not punish.
• It’s more about listening than talking.
    A Word About Consequences
• Natural Consequences-refers to a
  consequence which follows naturally from the
  child’s action without parental intervention.
    A Word About Consequences
• Logical Consequences-a consequence for
  inappropriate behavior, administered by an
  adult care giver, that logically relates to the
  misbehavior. Logical consequences are
  substituted when the natural consequence
  would result in injury or harm to the child.
• 1. Explain which behavior is inappropriate.
• 2. Explain why the behavior is inappropriate.
• 3. Give reasonable choices
   and consequences.
• 4. Allow time.
• 5. Be prepared to enforce your consequences,
  even when it’s not convenient. (learning
                Practice Situation #1
• Jackson, age 4, wants to be the
  Snack helper today, but that job
  was already assigned to Niko.
  When it’s time for snack, Jackson
  starts screaming and crying and
  snatches the snack caddy out of
  Niko’s hands. Niko sees Jackson is
  upset and says: “It’s okay,
  Jackson. I’ll let you do it today”.
  As the teacher, you are tempted
  by Niko’s compassion, but realize
  giving in might not be the best
  solution to this problem.
                   Practice Situation #1
•   Jackson, you need to give the snack
    caddy back to Niko.
•   Classroom jobs are posted on the job
    chart and it is Niko’s turn to help with
    snack today.
•   You can either hand Niko the snack
    caddy yourself, or I will help you give
    it back to Niko.
•   Allow Jackson time to think and
•   If Jackson does not hand the snack
    caddy over to Niko on his own within
    a 30-60 seconds, gently but firmly
    remove the snack caddy from
    Jackson’s hand and give it to Niko.
       Practice Situation #2

Four year old Jessica’s father is chaperoning a field trip to the
park. When it’s time to leave, Jessica throws a tantrum and
kicks off her shoes. Her father is having difficulty getting her
to calm down and put her shoes back on her feet so that she
can walk to the bus.
  Practice Situation # 2

*Jessica, you need to stop crying and put your shoes on.
*We had a fun time, but it is time to go home now and the bus is waiting.
*You can either help me get your shoes on and walk to the bus right now,
or I will carry you to the bus and put your shoes on after we get on it.
What do you choose?
* If Jessica continues to cry and refuse to cooperate, matter-of-factly
carry her onto the bus. If she chooses to cooperate, praise her efforts to
calm down and cooperate, help her get her shoes on and walk her to the
               Practice Situation #3
• Benjamin is three years old.
  During indoor gross motor time,
  he begins throwing a large ball
  and almost knocks over the
  computer monitor.
                   Practice Situation #3
•   Benjamin, you may not throw a large
    ball like that indoors.
•   You can either throw the a Nerf
    basketball in the classroom, or wait
    until the end of the day and take the
    large ball outdoors to play. Which do
    you choose?
•   Allow time for him to decide.
•   If he continues to play with the large
    ball indoors, restate the rule and take
    the ball away from him.
    When To Seek Professional Help:
         A Problem Checklist
Professional help may be warranted if child exhibits:
__significant loss of appetite, change in sleeping habits
  (increase or decrease), or other significant change in
  daily routine.
__frequent complaints of head aches, stomachaches,
  body aches & pains, fatigue and/or tics.
__an excessive degree of worry, anxiety, tenseness or
__a negative view of him/herself coupled with a
  pervasive negative outlook on almost everything.
__an angry or depressed mood almost all of the time.
        When To Seek Professional Help:
             A Problem Checklist
__sudden mood swings
__an argumentative attitude or is consistently defiant of
__a preference to be alone, isolating him/herself from
  others most of the time.
__new difficulties in school, either academically or
*If you checked even one of these symptoms, you
  should consult your child’s physician or a mental
  health professional.
Adapted from: Slap-Shelton, L. & Shapiro, L. E. (1992). Take a deep breath: The kids’ play away stress
                Our Sources

• Lake Central Education Foundation
• Crisis Prevention Intervention (CPI) Institute
• David Walsh, PhD, Why Kids of All Ages Need
  to Hear “NO”.
Remember where we are going
                       Wrap Up
• Question & Answer Period
• Final Thoughts

• Thank you for attending today’s presentation.
  Enjoy the rest of your day!
     • Lucy & Louise

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