Love really is all you need. I know, I know, it’s much easier said than done. Trust me, I know. This year, I have one little guy, William that has really challenged me. I have tried every trick in the book: preferential seating, behavior charts, positive feedback, and, well, I ‘ve thought about duct tape, but figured I better not.
Here’s the thing, while I feel like I’m throwing spaghetti at the wall and nothing is sticking, not much is working. Sure, things might work for a little bit – maybe the morning, maybe a day, maybe two days, but invariably, they get bad again. William was seeking our attention and he was determined to get it anyway possible.
Without going into detail, let’s just say, William has a difficult home life. I know this, I am working with other staff to try and do whatever I can to help him, but at the end of the day, when he’s lashing out and it’s affecting him, other kids, and me, it’s not good. I know in my head none of this is his fault. He’s five. But I still get frustrated. I felt like I’d used every tool in my toolbox and I didn’t know what to do.
Then, last week, Mrs. C., my amazing, wonderful, enlightened Ed Tech said to me, “You know, I think he just needs to be loved on.”
I know, I know, it couldn’t be that simple. It was.
We both started having him seat closer to us. We started using more physical contact. An arm on his shoulder, a hand on his back, more hugs, more cuddling. Today during calendar, he just stood in front of me with my arm draped around his chest. Well, bit by bit, day by day, things started getting better.
To be clear, the situation isn’t perfect, but above all else, I think William is feeling more successful and I know I am feeling much less frustrated. All it took was affection.