Discipline is an important topic when working with children yet it can be a topic that is minimized or under spoken of by parents when looking for a preschool.

Here are the two methods of discipline in a preschool:

1. time out or

2. conflict resolution

There was an old school theory which still exists with the method being time out. Just search and you can find many schools and parents using this as a way to remove the child from the conflict. While I believe it has its place in the home, in a school setting it can be make a child feel shame for being singled out in a public setting. Conflict resolution suggests that children are educated about the value of communication that is respectful and kind, while expressing feelings of being hurt by someone’s actions. Conflict resolution requires that teachers are trained to help children by modeling communication that is calm and well spoken, where teachers can also interact with children by teaching them how to articulate their feelings.

There are six steps to conflict resolution with preschoolers:

1: approach the children in conflict calmly and stop the conflict

2: acknowledge everyone’s feelings

3: gather information about what happened

4: restate the problem

5: ask for ideas from everyone for a solution and help choose a solution

6: be there for follow and to give support

When you are in a preschool setting ask the teachers how they handle conflict with the children. it is a question that is often overlooked yet one that becomes important as it will effect your child and set the stage for their ability to be social in a school setting.


 Debbie has been an early childhood educator for the past twenty years as a preschool teacher, director and parent educator. She is a member of the National Association of Early Childhood Educators, Pasadena City College’s Advisory Board and a local preschool directors networking group. Debbie is the owner and Director of La Canada Preschool. Her vision is to provide the best environment for children to experience discovery and their sense of wonder at this magical moment in human development.


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