Today's group was just an introduction, laying of ground rules, and team building. I started the group by talking about what behaviors are safe and unsafe for us to use in group and reviewed the classroom rules. The kiddos were super rambunctious because they had just come back from speech. After some calming and reinforcing of the little things they were doing correctly ("I like how G's voice is on 0," "J, thank you for sitting criss-cross," "N is showing me ready behavior because his hands are in his lap," etc), we got on track and the boys chose their group name to be The Footballs.
- Assertiveness - making sure they "called" the balloon by saying "I got it" if they planned on hitting it. It kept them all from running into each other and gave each boy ownership over that hit.
- Turn-taking - one of the boys, J, got a little too riled up and kept hogging the balloon. I had the opportunity to redirect him to include the other boys, and had him sit out when he needed a break from the excitement to give the others a chance.
- Apologizing - as expected, a few bumps occurred. We practiced saying a good apology when this happened (i.e. looking at the person in the eye, saying you're sorry, and why) and also accepting the apology with a "thank you, it's okay."
In retrospect, this game was probably a little above the kiddos level, but we made the best of it. Once we were done, I got the kiddos calmed down (a rather big task after jumping all over whacking a balloon around), and we processed a bit. We talked about what was easy, what was hard, and what we learned about working together and talking it out. They pooped out and lost attention pretty quickly, so processing was kept at a minimum.
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