Last night we were visiting with friends and we started talking about how during times of conflict we will often resort to negative behavior in an attempt to induce positive behavior. This is true in our personal relationships (how many of us can say that we have never yelled at our partners to get them to do the dishes?). I think this especially true in our classrooms and on our staff. If we want positive behaviour from the people (adults and children) we work with, we need to act positively towards them. Recognizing people for things they have done well will go much further than highlighting things they have not done well. This is a simple idea, and good teachers and leaders understand this intrinsically.
But this goes to more than simple classroom management, and getting people to do what you want them to do. This is about creating a world in our classrooms and schools where people act with integrity. This video, created by the Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education, speaks powerfully to how schools, families, and community all need to work together to provide a balanced education that educates both the minds and the heart.
“Because to navigate the world outside with compassion, acceptance and tolerance, we need to teach them compassion, acceptance and tolerance.”