Discipline

The goal of positive guidance or discipline is to help children learn to consider and respect
others and the environment around them, as well as to feel secure and in control of himself or
herself. Young children need to learn what is acceptable and how to live cooperatively with
others. Self-discipline is the ultimate goal we set for the children. We strive to make each child
intrinsically motivated to value accepted behaviors.

At the Center, clear and consistent age appropriate limits on behavior are set. The
environment is arranged in such a manner as to minimize the necessity of limits, and children
are allowed to participate in the decision making process. As the Children’s Center at Caltech
has a strong commitment to developing a positive sense of self-esteem and independent,
responsible and caring behavior on the part of the children, we approach discipline in a
positive rather than punitive manner. Teachers model appropriate behavior and provide
positive reinforcement, praising children for exhibiting those behaviors. Additionally, the
teachers provide reminders and cues as to acceptable behavior, as well as facilitate problem
solving amongst the children.

When unacceptable behavior occurs, the first course of action is positive redirection, with the
understanding that the child may return to an area or activity when they are able to use proper
behavior. Toddlers and two-year-old children are given many, many messages and reminders,
both verbally and physically, from teachers regarding what is appropriate and safe.13
At no time will a child be struck, roughly handled, verbally abused, or demeaned.
Bullying will not be tolerated. This behavior is categorically prohibited. This rule applies
to all adults and children on the CCC premises.