Our 5Rs: Respect, Responsibility, Reliability, Resourcefulness and Resilience form the basis of our social education at Village School, and the greatest of these is the first one: Respect.
We mention mutual respect in our documents, but we probably should call it universal respect as we have interactions between children and Village staff, children and parents, children and other children, parents with other parents, parents and Village staff and Village staff with each other as well.
One of the first things I say to new teachers who start at our school is this:
“Remember, when you want to say something to one of the children, say it as if you were talking to one of the other teachers or their parents.”
Sometimes when adults talk to children they default back to the way they were spoken to as a child. eg.”What are you all doing in here? Off you go, now!” Instead of, “Excuse me people, we were going to keep this room locked today, can you find somewhere else to be please?”
It’s important we monitor the way the children speak to each other, and for the next couple of weeks I’m focusing on respect, and having small groups at a time work on role plays for interactions in the playgrounds, and particularly in the cubbies since they seem to be becoming a lunchtime focus again (as long as it doesn’t rain all week!)