With First Grade, Mrs. Amanda Mutrux
News from Apr. 22nd 2015
I hope that many of you enjoyed Kim John Payne’s recent lecture. He is the author of the book Simplicity Parenting, as well as the creator of the Social Inclusion Approach we are implementing at our school.
The work of the approach is evident in Ms. Mutrux’s First Grade class. She is using the DADD method created by Kim John Payne to handle both simple and more complex issues between children as they arise.
Below is a description of DADD from Emerson Waldorf School who have The Social Inclusion Approach firmly rooted in their community.
- First… Disapprove
Begin by expressing clear disapproval for the action, “It is hurtful to behave as you did.” “We don’t speak that way in our family/class.” Speak with quiet directness. Mean it.
- And… Affirm
We know that we are supposed to separate a child’s actions from his/her whole being but it’s not always easy. To achieve this disapproval needs to be followed up right way by an affirmation…”You hardly ever speak like that.” “So often you say helpful things.”
- Then… Discover
Then the adult discovers what the subtle issues are. “What’s up?” “Something must be bothering you.” This question must come at the right time to get an honest response. (This is the step that most of us miss, but is where the most fertile ground for healing is.)
- Finally… Do-over
When the issue is clarified the adult can help the child to do over. “Let’s work out a way to say what you need to say without being hurtful,” or “You’ll need to apologize for the words you used but then say you can say what that is bothering you.” In thus way we honor everyone’s needs while acknowledging our responsibilities toward others.
This tool can be used to deal with a simple clash between children, or it can be used over the space of days when the issue is more complex. The aim of learning this strategy is that when the children need help, you will be able to intervene with quiet confidence without seeming to be on anybody’s side. Because only one out of every ten put-downs is actually witnessed by adults it’s important to speak up when the opportunity presents itself. When we are silent we are implicitly condoning the behaviors we witness.
I have been using this at home as well. As Kim John Payne has said, when parents and teachers are working together, we hold the child in a space of healing where it is safe to make mistakes, learn, and grow! It really is quite effective and simple.
First Grade Parent
Find more like this: Social inclusion program