Change of Scenery

This is a very, very simple trick for helping kids when they get stuck. 

By Momentous Institute | Jan 25, 2016
Change Scenery

This is a very, very simple trick for helping kids when they get stuck. Sometimes all a kid needs is a change of scenery. That’s right – just move him somewhere new, and you may find that he’s able to get unstuck.

Let’s give an example. We have a student in our second grade class here at Momentous School.* He does good work, but he struggles to pay attention. Sometimes his teacher notices that he is working well at his desk for a few minutes, but then he gets up and starts walking around the room and distracting others.

So his teacher simply moves him around. Sometimes she offers to let him work on the couch in the classroom. Sometimes she sends him next door to the other second grade class. This is never done as a punishment. It’s always framed in a gentle way like, “Oh, it looks like you’re having a hard time paying attention. Why don’t you pop over next door and finish this up over there?” or, “I know it can be hard to sit still in your desk for this long. Want to try sitting on the couch to see if that helps you focus?” And sometimes he chooses it for himself – he’ll say, “Can I go work on this in Mrs. Sullivan’s class?”

He has an agreement with the other second grade teacher that he’s welcome in her class as long as he focuses. He has a spot right next to her desk where he’s able to work quietly. Sometimes she doesn’t even notice that he’s arrived. Once he enters her room, the change of scenery is often enough to get him to sit down and do his work. It’s not perfect – nothing with kids is – but many times, a distracted or stuck child can benefit from a simple change of scenery.

*The child in the photo is not the student referenced in this example.