I work in an elementary school where kindergarten children assault and swear at their classmates and teachers on a weekly basis. Accident reports take up a lot of the teachers’ time and suspensions occur regularly.
Let’s just contemplate the reality of this for a minute: These are 4- and 5-year-old children!
Many of us question why, at such an early age, a child would contain so much rage and hostility. What could possibly be happening in their lives to initiate this anger?
We all talk of inclusivity in schools and this is mostly a good thing. We do not shun students according to race, culture, socio-economic backgrounds. Every child in the class gets a piece of the cake when birthdays are celebrated.
However, I believe that this inclusivity has to be looked at carefully from the angle of discipline.
Kids, like everyone else, carry a lot of baggage. They go through rough patches in which parents divorce, among other things. We should be cautious of unusual behaviour because we don’t always know what is going on at home.
But this should not allow us to go easy on kids when using violence. We all get upset but this does not mean we should condone violent or aggressive behaviour.
Not allowing a child to attend a field trip because of unacceptable behaviour should be pushed by the administration more often. After all, there are other children whose lives are being put in danger. Safety issues are big here and should never be overlooked.
These angry children will eventually be adults. What then?
It is a scary world when even the youngest members of society are showing this kind of behaviour.