Reset

Stop the cycle of winning/losing a battle. Introduce the reset and stop the battle right in its tracks.

By Momentous Institute | Jun 24, 2015
Reset

We all feel frustrated or overwhelmed or excited from time to time. And it’s not uncommon for one person’s energy to feed others, and before we know it the whole group has escalated. (Sometimes the adults too!)
 
One way to stop this situation right in its tracks is to call a “reset.”
 
Introduce the reset during a calm time, maybe at the start of the school year when going over classroom rules, or one night at the dinner table. Tell the kids that anyone can call a reset. A reset means that everyone stops what they’re doing and calls a truce. This will take some modeling from adults. For a reset to work, everyone has to agree to honor it – which can require a lot of self-regulation when the moment is heated!
 
Imagine a group of kids fighting over who gets to use the jump rope on the playground. One kid starts pulling it, the other joins in, and soon the whole lot of them are yelling and fighting. Then one kid calls out, “reset!” Everyone stops. The jump rope is dropped. Everyone moves on to another activity.
 
It sounds like magic. It won’t work that perfectly the first time. But if you start by calling “reset” during minor scuffles, soon it will be part of your culture and the kids will instinctively know how to respond.
 
A reset is beautiful because it stops the cycle of winning/losing a battle. Most small battles between kids don’t really need winners or losers. They just need endings. And even better when the kids can work that out themselves.

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