пятница, 8 апреля 2016 г.

"People need strokes, if they don't get them, their spinal cords will shrivel up". (E.Berne)

Some time ago the head of the sport section for boys (fighting) asked me the following question: "Why children (who are 8-10 years old) do not continue to visit his section after attending one or two lessons? The children have the perspective in the area of sport: the price is normal; the families are quite interested in the sports successes of their children".
I decided to think about this problem, because the dance classes, the art classes, even schools and kindergartens meet with the same problem.  The children sometimes do not even want to attend these social institutions.
I will not be able to consider and analyze the all parts of this problem in this small post; I will pay my attention to the several aspects which are simply evident to me.
The first aspect about which I would like to write is the deficiency of “the positive strokes” (E. Berne).
 What is it?
 It is simple - under the mysterious name we can find such necessary things in our lives like smiles, good words, etc. «A positive stroke» is one of the main conditions of the existence of a person. Children require kind words, praises, respect, - first of all, in their families since the family is one of the main agents of socialization, and then "the positive strokes" are already necessary in the other institutes of socialization the number of which is increasing in the process of the growing up of the child. However, there is the lack of the positive communications.
The behaviour of adults in this question is a little bit strange. Quoting the phrase of A. Sent-Exupery "the real unique luxury - is a luxury of human intercourse, adults at the same time approve the fact that it is the difficulty to tell kind and pleasant words and it is easy to say the sarcasm, remarks and criticism at any time. There are so many statements, articles and books which are devoted to the question how to criticize the actions of the child (and of the adult) rightly, that it is necessary to do it correctly and not to criticize the personality. But not all adults follow these rules. For example, one remark of the teacher or of the trainer is often lasted several minutes, etc. And is it the right process of training and education? And can we say that the children do not repeat the similar behavior? But, if the remarks of the trainer, of the teacher, of the tutor, even in the rigid form, are perceived by the child not so painfully, the disapproval and sneers from the other children will be perceived by the child much more tragically. Even if there are perfect physical conditions at school or section, a bad social atmosphere (which can be the reason of the child's trauma) is the main factor of the problems of children.
I observed a one case. A  little boy decided to attend a new dance class. He had a stammering. After the lessons he tried to explain to his peers that it is normal and everything will be OK when he become older (children laughed at him). Perhaps, it was necessary for the trainer of this group to praise the boy, to estimate positively his dancing successes in the first lesson. And then would be the conversation between the children about dances, not about stammering? And would the child come to dance next time? Instead of it, he gave up the dance class.
 I also observed an absolutely different situation in the one kindergarten where tutors and speech therapists managed to create friendly conditions for the  children with the problems in the development of the speech: there was the theatre where children were the main heroes, the children learned poems and stories, etc. And, when I conducted the research, the kids did not hesitate, they painted, answered questions according their pictures with the great enthusiasm, they even forgot about difficulties in the pronunciation and tried to select difficult words to tell the stories.
The trainer, the teacher, the head of the section is an integral part of a social climate in the collective. It depends on the trainer, teacher, whether the children will be in the atmosphere of friendship and a mutual understanding. In the conditions of indifference and a destructive criticism, nobody will survive. 
Boy, 6 years old: "I painted the school. These are the teacher and the child.
The child likes mathematics..."


The sections, classes do not exist for a long time not because of the growing payment  Adults and children try to find groups of adherents, friends, and it is not easy to do it in our life. Children feel it, especially sharply, therefore they are beginning the search of the communications in the Internet.
And it will be the second aspect which I would like to consider. 
Not receiving enough "positive strokes" in a real life , the children, becoming older, try to find them in a world wide web, first of all, in the social networks. But it is also not so easy. According to my observations, the child does not see enough «likes» and  positive comments. He or she thinks, that nobody likes his or her page, that the page is not interesting. Here we again meet with the problem of loneliness. Adults can explain to themselves what is happening. But for the child it is a problem. The child takes responsibility for the situation: he or she thinks that nobody loves him or her and does not accept his or her. Sometimes there are even the cases of bullying of the child in a social network by the other children -  it is very dangerous. And to forbid to use a network is not a good decision in this case.
Parents need to be extremely attentive in this question,  let the children be in  a «free navigation» is impossible. It is important to observe, with whom the child communicates, to achieve trust with the child, to discuss an each separate case. Now in a network there are many groups of interests for the  children of the certain age, even for the smallest. It is necessary to help the child to find these groups, where he or she can share the creativity (pictures, photos, video, stories, verses, etc.) to receive a necessary information, an advice and an approval from the peers and experts for the further development.
We need to remember, that children see us, that they hear us, notice what we do, they interpret and reproduce different actions. It is simple, but it is necessary to smile, to praise, to encourage, to be polite, to say kind words, to put "likes" in the social networks and to write compliments. Sometimes it is better to praise one more time: “"People need strokes, if they don't get them, their spinal cords will shrivel up". 
Boy, 11 years old. He studies to draw and wants his pictures to receive "likes". 


References:
Sibireva M. How to bring up an optimistic child.

 You can also read the following blog posts:
 1.Optimism as the Condition of Survival.
 2. «Why Does the Child Prefer to Portray Him(Her)self Alone?»
Please do not sell, post,  publish, or distribute all or any part of this article without author's permission.

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