My six year old piped up at dinner one night with “we had a restorative practice today!” With gentle questioning his story unfolded about one of his classmates pushing another into a cubby hole in the cloakroom. When the teacher was told about the incident the next day, she instigated the acronym WARM, an exercise the class were getting used to. My son was able to talk about each associated letter:
W for what happened – “Jane pushed Bob into the cubby hole and his head got hurt”
A for who was affected – as well as Bob being hurt, other people affected were Peter and Harry who saw it happen and some new entrant students who saw it happen. Also affected was Bob’s mother, Jane’s step mother, the classroom teacher, the new entrant teacher, the deputy principal and the principal. “That’s a lot of people eh?!” he exclaimed.
R for how to repair the harm – it was decided that Jane would spend some time with the deputy principal that day and at home Jane and her mum would do some home baking for Bob and his family.
M for how do we move on – the new entrant teacher was going to use the example and talk with her class about what is and what isn’t appropriate behaviour. My son’s class are working on coming up with ways of helping Jane not do it again and helping Bob to feel safe around Jane.
I was most impressed with my son’s ability to think through the WARM acronym and am waiting for the day he automatically uses it with his big brother!