Of course, keeping small children safe is the Number One task of any child care center or preschool. As a teacher, you are well aware that the thing parents expect most when they pick up their child at the end of the day is that their child will be all in one piece, with no scratches or bruises. We even feel we must explain scratches and bruises if they should happen (as they will!) and maybe write up a report.
There is another, more subtle form of safety, though, that we are not so careful of and where lapses are not so obvious. This is psychological or emotional safety, safety of the self. The scars left by harsh treatment, rude comments, and repressive actions on our part are more long-lasting than scratches and bruises. Adults’ criticism and punishment may not be physically injuring but they damage a child’s view of himself and his view of the world. When you consider how safe your classroom is, consider how safe children feel with you. Does every one of the children in your care feel cared for and truly safe?
Find out more about physical safety for children in child care or preschool in our course Where the Danger Lies. Find out more about emotional and psychological safety in our courses Love in Action and Unconditional Teaching.