At the school where I teach our school mascot is the tiger and our motto is, “ROAR”, which stands for “Respect Others Act Responsibly”. I have a really nice group of students in my Kindergarten class this year, but today, we were not roaring!! Several students got in trouble at recess, and a few more had to be spoken to at lunch. Ironically enough, earlier that day, I had been looking for a Valentine’s Day book that was stored in my February bin. I went through all of the books on Valentines Day, Presidents Day and Healthy Teeth Month and there was one in there that must have accidentally been thrown in. It was called, “How to Lose All Your Friends”, by Nancy Carlson. When I found it, I did not recognize it, and realized that it was a library book, that has been stored away for nearly a year! I put it aside to be sure to return it later in the day. Little did I know that I would be changing around my lesson plans to incorporate this great book about being a good friend into our day. Even while I was reading it, I knew that this would be my blog tonight.
If you are a parent or teacher of children looking for a book on social skills, I highly recommend reading it to them! It starts out by saying, “If you don’t want to have any friends, then follow these simple instructions:” It goes on to say, grab all the good toys for yourself, throw a tantrum and tattle on your friends. The author uses humor and child friendly illustrations to keep their attention riveted. The sarcasm was not lost on my five and six year old Kindergarteners! By the end of the book, my students were complimenting one another and talking about ways we could ROAR at school. I encouraged them to continue to ROAR at home and remember how great kind words can make you feel. I have said it before, but it is worth repeating, if we can enforce these behaviors when children are young, they will continue to evolve as they become adults!