No Touch Rule
We’ve outlawed bullying as well as all forms of negative touching as it has no place in our school!
We want St Mary's to be a completely ‘Bully Free Zone’ & we also want it to be a place where children can play happily together & not get hurt.
As a result, we work hard to ensure that children understand that there is a ‘No Touch Rule’ in school — that doesn’t mean that they can’t hug, shake hands or play Tig, etc. but it does mean that no negative forms of touch are allowed.
This message is reinforced as part of the Establishment Phase & in assemblies in order that all children are very clear about what is allowed & what isn’t. This is then picked up on in classes by teachers as part of PSHE, Circle Time activities & P4C.
Because our underlying ethos is Christian, we often refer back to the teachings of Jesus to “Treat others as you yourself would like to be treated!” (Luke 6:31) & try to ensure that children are taught how to respect & relate to each other in the most positive ways possible.
At St Mary's, we ask children not to touch other children intentionally unless it is for a positive reason.
We ask children not to do the following intentional forms of touching:
- Lashing out;
- Throwing things;
We realise however, that some touch can be unintentional in its affects such as:
- Play fighting (we ask children not to do this as it can so easily get out of hand when someone gets angry, upset or even hurt);
- Dragging or pulling some-one around (we ask children not to do this as a simple game or show of affection can result in problems);
- Squeezing or poking some-one(even actions that might be meant in fun or even to show friendship can be misunderstood & can easily cause upset, anger or hurt);
- Invading somebody’s space (some people don’t like this & can feel threatened or upset very easily).
Sometimes, negative touch happens by accident of course. In these instances, it is important to help children think about the other person’s feelings or pain. Those who have caused the accident, shouldn’t spend their time protesting their innocence, but should rather focus on the other person to apologise & to show care. This can be hard for children to do & needs to be deliberately encouraged.