Let’s help them build their emotional relationship skills so that when they start dating “for real” and those hormones have kicked in, communication is a habit, respect is a habit, honesty is a habit, listening is a habit, setting and respecting boundaries is a habit, coping with rejection in healthy ways is a habit… Why not use this time to make sure that all the elements of forming healthy relationships are there, ready to be utilized before things get messy.
show me new dating site in usa - Dating in elementary school
” She wanted to know why her teachers seemed so hung up on this word, this concept: dating. How can be negotiated so that everyone gets what they want from the relationship in a respectful and mutually affirming way? They need to check in and make sure that they are operating under the same set of assumptions, expectations, desires, goals and boundaries as their partner.
I could only assume that it was because somehow we’ve equated dating to sexual intimacy, and that might scare teachers who are unprepared to see their elementary school students as physical beings who crave physical affection (not sexual attention, just physical touches like hand holding and hugs and heads resting on shoulders – and yes, even kissing because those things feel good…) Or perhaps it was because teachers thought about what dating meant to them as adults, or even high school students when hormones and a lack of real information pushed it toward the sexual and they couldn’t bear to think about their sweet elementary students in that way. elementary students by and large aren’t there yet either. Whether that partner is purely platonic, romantic or physical is irrelevant IF students have learned to start their relationships from a place of open, honest, respectful conversation and IF they’ve learned how to handle rejection when it comes, because it will come.
What if you helped students to think critically about it themselves? Banning them from interacting with each other in ways that feel natural to them, ways that they see modeled all around them is a failing strategy.
What if you used this moment to remind your students that all relationships – friendships, work partnerships, relationships, marriages, benign acquaintanceships, all of them are founded on the same basic principles, the same foundation of mutual respect, trust and vulnerability. But teaching them how to interact in healthy ways, that is something we can all pitch in and do.
I can assure you that the student’s teacher [or an administrator] will personally contact individual parents when, or if, this becomes an issue concerning the student’s disruption of the education process.