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tobemommy

How do you address (rare) aggressive classroom behaviour?

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tobemommy

Back from school drop off and teacher just let me know that yesterday DS (In Kindy age 5 years 2 months) snapped/broke off a toy and when asked the reason he said, “Just because I wanted to”. Teacher said she just wanted to let me know and although not a big deal she wanted me to have a word with him, so it doesn’t happen again.

How would you address something like this? Background: Very happy in school, has many friends, is helpful in nature and loves doing chores in school like packing up and cleaning up lunch area. Wanted your advice as I want to convey him the right message about this.

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Feral-as-Meggs

He’s probably being perfectly honest that he wanted to snap it for the fun and interest of seeing how it would bend and making it snap.

 

Same as you pop bubble wrap or snap a stick, or fold up beer mats or whatever.

 

So Id go about explaining who bought the toy, how it’s no one can play with it now etc. But how there’s lots of things in the world for experimenting with bending and snapping, and he should ask a grown-up.

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Jenflea

He's 5, I don't think he's on the path of lifelong criminal.

 

I would think the teacher should've handled it on the spot and that's it. I don't like the idea of school issues following little kids home, they aren't old enough at 5 to really continue the discussion, it's happened, it's over, they've forgotten about it.

 

Maybe the class as a whole could talk about looking after other people's things, and being careful of the school's property, not singling anyone out.

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robhat

I'd have a conversation with him focusing on the idea that stuff at school is shared and not his and so he can't just do as he pleases with it.

 

It can be hard at this age as some kids don't have a lot of experience with shared spaces, nor to they have much concept of the value of stuff. There is the possibility too that he was annoyed or frustrated for some reason and took it out on the toy, but at this age he probably doesn't remember, or likely can't articulate whatever happened.

 

I would not worry. The teacher is mainly telling you so that if it does turn out to be an issue and something he does a lot that later on there won't be the problem of you not being told sooner! Also, she probably knows that if something is bugging him at school that he may be more likely to open up to you than her. Just make it clear to him in words he can understand that stuff at school belongs to the school and he's not allowed to damage it.

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Yippee-Ki-Yay

I kind of agree with Jenflea in that I think the teacher should have addressed it, but at the same time, I would use the opportunity to have a discussion with my child. I would often have a better chance at getting some kind of an explanation than the teacher. It would go kind of like this:

 

"I heard something happened to a toy you were playing with today...."

Kid replies either yes or no and then you either explain the broken toy if they dont know what youre talking about, or if they do, you ask them to elaborate on what happened.

All done without judgement and keeping the questions simple and open. "how did that toy end up like that?" (said with wonder rather than as interrogatively).

They will either say "I did it" or "i dont know" or something in between and you work at their level of answer. "I did it" might get "oh no! (mock horror) what did that poor little toy do to deserve that?" "I dont know" might need teasing out, say, "do you think someone might have accidentally broken it?"

Whatever the answers are, you might find out that your child was unhappy about something or that something else happened.

I would end it with a light "Well its a shame that toy cant be played with anymore, might need to be more gentle/careful/ask for help (whatever applies) so that everyone can share and play with all the toys."

If it was wanton destruction I wouldnt make a big deal out of it (especially if out of character) but I would say something like "we had better get a new one so other kids dont miss out".

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Lou-bags

When my DS1 did something similar (he was 3, nearly 4 I think), we talked about respecting property and finding other ways to express ourselves (his was out of frustration). We had a talk about apologies and making things right. Then I had him choose one of his own toys (not a fave) to donate to childcare as a means of making reparations, and had him apologize to his room leader.

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tobemommy

Thanks everyone ! And thanks for taking the time to help me respond ! I will bring it up with him on the weekend :)

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