In a world where mental health and well-being are being fully recognised as paramount for each and every individual, we at Bright Little Stars are doing all we can to support the little ones in our care to begin to recognise their emotions and to be able to self-regulate their behaviour.
A Therapeutic Approach to Behaviour
At the core of our care is our approach to behaviour and we do this as ‘therapeutic intervention’ as opposed to ‘behaviour management’. We recognise that every behaviour is communicating something. When we are seeking to promote pro-social behaviour, we begin by providing positive experiences for children, these generate positive feelings which ultimately result in pro-social behaviour. If a child feels good about themselves, they will generally interact well with others.
As an extension to the above approach, all Supernova learning rooms at Bright Little Stars now have a weekly Young Mindfulness Session as part of the bespoke Bright Little Stars Learning Programme. This additional part of the programme is provided by Young Mindfulness, who have used their experiences in primary education and qualifications in psychology to create fun and engaging sessions, that combine concepts with activities. Children learn to recognise their emotions and develop coping mechanisms that give them the ability to regulate these emotions and therefore support their behaviour and attention.
The parachute is used as a warm up game at the beginning of each session to ensure a consistent start. It helps the children feel comfortable and get all the wriggles out.
Mirrors are used to recite self-affirmations. Positive affirmations increase self-esteem.
Sensory input is also used, including smell and touch. These are sometimes carried out whilst listening to relaxing music, this helps children develop the ability to focus and learn to ignore the ‘noise’.
Advice for Parents
- Take time to affirm your child e.g. You are special, you are loved, you are kind.
- Notice and pick out the positives (positive reinforcement).
- Validate your child’s feelings! It’s so important not to reject feelings but see them as visitors that come and go. Remind them that all their feelings are okay.
- To encourage a growth mindset, model the language you wish to hear e.g. “This is so tricky but I’m going to try again. I know I can do it”. “I’m going to share my grapes because I want to be kind”.
- Read books that teach kindness and empathy.
- Each day, ask your child to name one thing they are thankful for.
- Try gentle massages before bedtime to relax your child.
- Make a ‘calm box’ with various sensory items in.
- Lots of hugs to release oxytocin!
Breathing is a major part of Young Mindfulness and ultimately can be used as a grounding tool as children mature. Focus on your own breathing every now and then, especially when emotions are high. Breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. Support your child to do the same when the need arises. For more information visit www.youngmindfulness.co.uk
Contact Bright Little Stars Nursery
To learn more about Bright Little Stars Nursery and our exclusive Parent Area, contact us to speak to us today!