Kids Getting an Adult for Help Isn't Always the Best Solution (What Do You Think?) by Lark Sontag
Entire classrooms of children are going to an adult for help. Help, because someone brushed against a hand. Help, because of a disagreement on what game to play. Help, because someone finds John’s sneeze unpleasant.
Children take things literally. We tell children to get an adult if there is danger, but rarely do we explain on a continuous basis what is danger. While this may seem minor, it’s harmful. If everyone goes for help for actions that can probably be solved among friends, children in real danger might not get the help that they need. It is the “boy that cried wolf” with more dire consequences. Here's some advice on how to demonstrate to little ones about when to go to an adult:
- Model cooperation explicitly and regularly. Cooking lessons are great for this.
- Model how to resolve disagreements. Explain why it is important.
- Explain that danger means someone can get hurt or are hurt. Hurt involves bleeding, bruises and pain. Use pictures.
- Explain that danger also involves people leaving a designated area. Provide a map of designated areas.
Please remember to be very serious when you’re discussing this because for little ones this is very serious.
What do you think?