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Teaching new skills to an upset student

Date: January 14th, 2016
By: Polly Bath

Polly Bath: When a child in your classroom has a problem, the best thing to do is validate it right off. Even if you think it’s stupid, validate the problem.

For example, if a kid said to you, “Oh, my goldfish died.” We wouldn’t say, “Flush it and get another one.” That would only make things worse. Instead validate that this is a tragedy for them.

As soon as we validate their problem, it blows the wind out of their fight sale. And then they will sit down with you.

Next, we want to relate to them. It could be talking about something related to their problem or something completely unrelated. Again, this blows the wind out of their sales, and will open up the opportunity for you to roll in and teach.

We have to get kids available to learn a new skill. We do this by validating their problem, relating to them in some way, and then we can teach them some techniques they can use next time. After this we can reintegrate the child back into whatever the situation was where they had their problem.