« Bringing it Off | Main | The Saving Grace of Effective Transitions »

February 06, 2007


Certain birthdays represent meaningful thresholds in our society; times at which someone decided we are ready to take on new responsibilities.  After seeing Aniyah today on her birthday, I’m beginning to think we should add the big ZERO-FIVE to that list.

Aniyah often has difficulty concentrating on group work and respecting others when they are speaking, but today I saw improvement.  During clean-up time I noticed Aniyah reminding her friends to put their name cards back.  We all know that if we forget, we will have to wait a couple of minutes before going to choice time the next day.  As Aniyah told classmates to “put your cards back, and be responsible” with a sing-song tone, I rushed over and thanked her for being such a great cheerleader.

We decided, spur of the moment, on a new title that connects her affinity for cheering to the classroom activities: Responsibility Cheerleader.  Her face lit up, and she smiled as she repeated the cheer while heading into the bathroom to wash her hands before lunch time.  I plan on applying this role to other parts of the day and think that, if she takes ownership of the cheer and receives encouragement and appreciation from me, the new role could, in fact, make her more responsible and respectful of her friends.

Aniyah also did a great job focusing during whole-group time on the rug, usually a challenging activity for her.  When she did call out disruptively, I did not call on her.  She ended up crying, because she did not get a chance to convey her thoughts.  I consider that a breakthrough as it indicates she is caring more about participating in discussions than doing her own thing.

Now, I’m not really sure if it was a heightened sense of maturity on her birthday that led to Aniyah’s super day or her mother’s promise of a Princess Barbie birthday party in return for better behavior.  So, I’m covering my bases and have spoken with her mother about an individualized behavior contract, which I plan on creating with Aniyah tomorrow morning.  As I have learned from experience, if we can isolate those behaviors we want to change and design rewards around a child’s interests, the child, the family, and I can more effectively focus on specific problems and lasting solutions.

We shall see…


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference R-E-S-P-O-N-S-I-B-I-L-I-T-Y:


The comments to this entry are closed.


Inside Pre-K


Current Author

Send me e-mail
I teach pre-k at a Head Start in Virginia. more...

Past Authors

Sophia "Good Morning Children"

Recent Comments

Pre-K Now News

Visit Pre-K Now
Pre-K Now is a public education and advocacy organization that advances high-quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten for all three and four year olds. Visit Pre-K Now >

Kids Quotes

Post a Kids Quote>>



Lead From The Start

Early Stories

Pre-K Vermont

The Early Ed Watch Blog

Urban Preschool


Enchanted Learning

National Association for the Education of Young Children

Pre-K Now

Reading Is Fundamental


Teach for America

Teaching Our Youngest

The Perpetual Preschool

About Pre-K Now National Events Calendar 
© 2005-2008 Pre-K Now