Bad Kid or Kid With Unmet Needs?


I met a young lady in grade one who could not sit still for anything!  As I watched her, I thought about the labels that people might attach to her:  undisciplined, badly behaved, a poor listener.

But I know that all behaviour is an attempt to meet a need.  Watching her reminded me of a training session I recently attended where my behaviour was similar.  The only difference is that I’m older and more skilled at managing when I’m in a situation where I’m stuck in a hard chair in a cold room with someone talking to me about something that I’m not that interested in.

She’s not bad or undisciplined.  She had a need.  And she needs to learn some strategies for meeting her needs in a more appropriate way.

When I was stuck in that training session, I got up and stood at the back of the room for awhile.  I got a coffee.  I fiddled with my pen.

I hope this beautiful girl doesn’t learn from adults that she is a frustrating, bad kid.  I hope we take the time to teach her what she needs to learn.


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