Behaviour Guidance Policy

The right for children to receive positive guidance in a supportive and respectful environment is protected in National Regulations. Children learn to face a variety of challenges throughout their lives and through this develop not only self-regulation, but positive dispositions such as resilience and perseverance. Learning the difference between acceptable and unacceptable behavior assists children to regulate their own behaviors in different social and emotional environments as well as when interacting with peers and adults.

PURPOSE

We aim to create positive relationships with children making them feel safe, secure and supported within our Service. We will ensure children are treated with respect, consistency, fairly and equitably as they are supported to develop the skills and knowledge required to behave in a socially and culturally acceptable manner.

Supporting children to develop socially acceptable behavior and self-regulation is a primary goal for educators and families. This is embedded in fundamental documents including the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF), The Education and Care Services National Regulations and the National Quality Standard (NQS).  

SCOPE

This policy applies to children, families, staff, management and visitors of the Service.

DEFINITIONS

Self-regulation: The ability to manage energy states, emotions, behavior and attention: the ability to return to a balanced, calm and constant state of being. Self-regulation is a key factor for mental health, wellbeing and learning (Kids matter, cited in the Guide to the NQF, p.629).

IMPLEMENTATION

The behavior and guidance techniques used by staff and Educators at  First Idea Family day care Services are designed to give children the opportunity to expand their experiences of life in a productive, safe environment that allows individuals the right to safety, tolerance, self-expression, cultural identity, dignity and the worth of the individual.

Educators understand that as children grow and develop self-regulation becomes an important aspect of social and emotional development as they begin to understand how their actions affect others.

We believe in providing boundaries as part of a loving and secure relationship with children and families to help them feel secure and self-confident. Children benefit from knowing that their environment is stable and that a competent adult is taking care of them.

There are three aspects to promoting positive behavior:

  1. A learning environment that is positive and supportive, and provides developmentally appropriate experiences and resources
  2. Strategies for building skills and strengthening positive behavior based on age-appropriate behavior expectations
  3. Strategies for decreasing undesired behaviors

Management/Nominated Supervisor/Responsible Person will ensure:

  • Information is gathered from families about their children’s social skills and relationship preferences, which will be recorded in the child’s individual file. Our educators will use this information to engage children in experiences that support children to develop and practice their social and shared decision-making skills.
  • A partnership is developed with local schools and other professionals or support agencies that work with children who have diagnosed behavioral or social difficulties to develop plans for the inclusion of these specific children. This information will be kept confidential and in the individual child’s file.
  • Children are given the opportunity to make choices and experience the consequences of these choices when there is no risk of physical or emotional harm to the child or anyone else.
  • Children are being acknowledged when they make positive choices in managing their behavior.
  • Positive strategies are being implemented to enable educators to encourage positive behavior in children in order to minimise adverse behavior. In addition, we will implement strategies educating children about developing behavior limits and the consequences of inappropriate behavior.
  • Excessive behavior is managed and communicated with families.
  • Support educators enhance their skills and knowledge in guiding children’s behavior
  • A Strategic Inclusion Plan (SIP) is developed with local support agencies
  • The SIP is reviewed on a periodic basis reflecting changes that have been applied through the implementation of the plan.

Educators will:

  • Encourage and support each child’s social and emotional development, striving to develop children’s self-regulation and an understanding of the feelings of others.
  • Actively work with younger children to promote and role-model positive ways to interact with others.
  • Actively work with all children to support them in constructing and conveying ways of expressing needs, resolving conflict, and responding to the behavior of others.
  • At all times provide positive role-modelling in their dealings with children, other educators and staff, and families.
  • Guide children’s behavior, teaching them how to be considerate of others – to think about the effects of their actions on others.  It is important that children understand what acceptable and unacceptable behavior is and how to manage their emotions.
  • Talk calmly with children about the consequence of their actions, and the reason for rules.
  • Use positive guidance through redirection. In the instance of adverse behavior being persistently observed, Educators will evaluate their program, room set up, supervision etc. to reflect on inappropriate behavior, triggers and sources.
  • Role model appropriate behavior and language, encouraging children to socialise with other children, including children of different cultural backgrounds as well as from different age groups and different genders.
  • Implement “Time with” an adult, which will be used when all other strategies (above) have been exhausted. “Time with,” allows children time to reflect on their actions, assisting in fostering self-discipline and to acknowledge that there are consequences to actions. “Time with” will occur under the supervision of other Educators.
  • Take into consideration the child’s past experiences as their behavior could be a result from past trauma such as changes in routine, changes or losses within the family, placement in care, or more serious circumstances involving abuse, neglect, or family violence.  
  • Be responsive to these former experiences, designing and implementing behavior plans with the individual child that include strategies which will assist alternative and positive behavior.
  • Ensure all strategies being implemented are appropriate to the child’s age and developmental capacity.
  • Adapt a positive approach, excluding cruel, harsh, humiliating or demeaning actions.
  • Consult with industry professionals to support the child within the Service and implement techniques within the program to benefit all.
  • Commit to professional development and keep up to date with industry information regarding behavior management.
  • Re-direct a child who may be causing or about to cause harm to himself or herself, another child or adult. Incidents may include a child who is kicking, spitting, biting, throwing furniture or toys, punching or hitting, or being disruptive. Redirection may also include an incident where a child places itself in a dangerous situation, for example, climbing a fence or hiding under furniture. Safety is a priority and this may mean using physical re-direction in which an Educator will actually remove the child from the harmful situation
  • Complete a ‘Behavior Incident Report’ with each incident that occurs. Families are to be notified where they will be required to read and sign in an instance where a child or children’s safety has been jeopardised.
  • Continue observing the child, where a similar incidence occurs three times the child’s parents and Educators will meet to discuss the behavior of concern as they assist in creating a Strategic Inclusion Plan (SIP) to support the child in the environment.
  • Exchange information with families about behavior guidance which is encouraged both on an informal and more formal basis, such as parent interviews and through newsletters.
  • Be sufficiently informed, trained and supervised to implement the Strategic Inclusion Plan (STP) created, ensuring that information is composed and recorded for reflection on its effectiveness for the individual child.
  • Support children to explore different identities and points of view and to communicate effectively when resolving disagreements with others.
  • Participate in planned and spontaneous conversations with children about emotions, feelings and issues of inclusion and fairness, bias and prejudice and the consequences of their actions and the reasons for this as well as the appropriate rules.
  • Provide children with the language and vocabulary needed to express their emotions and feelings and verbalise their concerns.
  • Encourage children to listen to other people’s ideas, consider pro-social and altruistic behaviour and collaborate and negotiate in problem solving situations.
  • Listen empathetically to children when they communicate their emotions, provide encouragement as they reassure the child it is normal to experience positive and negative emotions.
  • Guide children to remove themselves from situations where they are experiencing frustration, anger or fear.
  • Support children to negotiate their rights and rights of others and mediate perceptively when children experience complexity in resolving dissimilarity.
  • Learn about children’s relationships with others and their relationship preferences they have and use this knowledge to encourage children to manage their own behavior and expand on their empathy skills.
  • Work with individual families and professional agencies to ensure that a consistent approach is used to support children with diagnosed behavioral or social difficulties.
  • Use positive language, gestures, facial expressions and tone of voice when redirecting or discussing children’s behavior with them.
  • Remain calm, tender and tolerant as they encourage children who are strongly expressing distress, frustration or anger.
  • Guide children’s behavior with a focus on preserving and promoting children’s self-esteem as they learn to self-regulate their behavior.

Families will:

  • Be informed of behavior concerns the Service may have with their child, this includes: the positive and negative aspects of the day.
  • Collaborate with Educators and professional agencies when required in order to develop a broader understanding of the child’s developmental level, the child’s family, the parent’s approach, and any recent events, which may be influencing the child’s behavior.

Children will:

  • Learn to respect the rights and needs of others by anticipating the result and consequences of their behavior.
  • Be given positive guidance towards acceptable behavior so they learn what acceptable and unacceptable behavior is.
  • Gradually develop an understanding of their actions and how their behavior impacts on others.
  • Be encouraged to use their words rather than actions to resolve conflicts.
  • Build on strengthening their communication through:
    • Greeting others when they arrive and depart from the Service
    • Sharing resources
    • Assisting when it is time to pack away the indoor and outdoor environment
    • Using manners such as please and thank-you
  • Learn to wait for their turn for an appropriate period of time. This will depend on age and development
  • Learn about the feelings of others throughout the program in order to assist children to understand the consequences of their actions.
  • Be encouraged to engage in cooperative and pro-social behavior and express their feelings and responses to others’ behavior confidently and constructively, including challenging the behavior of other children when it is disrespectful or unfair.

Positive behavior strategies:

Guiding children’s behavior is an important aspect of caring for and educating children. Positive strategies need to be developed to assist children to learn appropriate ways of behaving. Corporal punishment and unreasonable discipline are not permitted in children’s services, not only because the child may be physically harmed, but also because it nearly always has detrimental effects on the child’s self-esteem and feelings of security.

Our Service will:

  • Establish positive relationships with children
  • Empower children to use language and other forms of non-hurtful communication to communicate their emotions
  • Promote positive, empathetic relationships between children assisting them to develop a respectful relationship
  • Encourage and assist children to make decisions for themselves and provide opportunities for independence and self-regulation
  • Provide clear and reasonable limits so that children know what is expected of them and follow through to help them abide by the limits
  • Model appropriate behaviors
  • Provide positive feedback and focus on children’s strengths and achievements and build on their abilities
  • Be understanding and supportive – acknowledge children’s emotions
  • Help children develop a sense of social responsibility so that they become aware of the impact of their actions on others
  • Promote children’s initiative and agency
  • Discuss guidelines, rules, limits and what is fair with children, and use their contributions in setting limits and guidelines.
  • Provide age-appropriate and interesting activities, experiences and equipment for children to use and become engaged in as they challenge their development
  • Providing opportunities for children to explore both in the indoor and outdoor environment
  • Set up the environment (indoor and outdoor) for children to engage in activities and experiences in accordance with their abilities and interests.
  • Ensure there is sufficient materials and equipment
  • Implement a regular routine to support children’s positive behavior. Routines help to provide a sense of security, so children feel settled.

Early Years Learning Framework

Outcome 1: Children have a strong sense of identity
1.1 Children feel safe, secure, and supported
1.2 Children develop their emerging autonomy, inter-dependence, resilience and sense of agency
1.3 Children develop knowledgeable and confident self-identities
1.4 Children learn to interact in relation to others with care, empathy and respect

Quality Area 5: Relationships with Children

5.1 Relationships between educators and children

Respectful and equitable relationships are maintained with each child

5.1.1 Positive educator to child interactions

Responsive and meaningful interactions build trusting relationships, which engage and support each child to feel secure, confident and included.

5.1.2 Dignity and rights of the child

The dignity and rights of every child are maintained

5.2 Relationships between children

Each child is supported to build and maintain sensitive and responsive relationships

5.2.1 Collaborative learning

Children are supported to collaborate, learn from and help each other

5.2.2 Self-Regulation

Each child is supported to regulate their own behaviour, respond appropriately to the behaviour of others and communicate effectively to resolve conflicts

Education and Care Services National Regulations

Children (Education and Care Services) National Law
155 Interactions with children
156 Relationships in groups

Source

  • Australian Children’s Education & Care Quality Authority.
  • Guide to the Education and Care Services National Law and the Education and Care Services National Regulations
  • ECA Code of Ethics.
  • Guide to the National Quality Standard.
  • http://raisingchildren.net.au
  • www.napcan.org.au
  • www.cyh.com
  • www.acwa.asn.au
  • www.community.nsw.gov.au
  • www.kidsmatter.edu.au
  • Louise Porter
  • Developing Responsible Behavior
  • Revised National Quality Standards
  • Inclusion – KU Children’s Services
  • Department of Education and Training
  • Inclusion Support Programme – https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/overview_of_the_strategic_inclusion_plan-web_0.pdf

REVIEW

POLICY REVIEWED – Sep 2018

NEXT REVIEW DATE – Sep 2019

Modifications

Policy created for First Idea Family Day Care Services, inclusive of changes to the National Quality Standards and Education and Care National Regulations.

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My kids and I have always felt home at First Idea. The team at First Idea have been so professional and understanding. I highly recommend their services to anyone who wants a safe…

Steven Zane

My kids always feel home at First Idea Family Day Care. Thanks to the team for not just doing their job, but adding a personal touch into their duties at work each day.

Rebecca Paul

The staff at First Idea family have been so helpful right from the time of admission till each day of nurturing my son to a better individual. I can’t stop thanking them for everything.

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