Rangely’s Love and Logic sessions wrap up; program takes new look at teaching, parenting

RANGELY I Love and Logic has been around for decades, but this spring, five Love and Logic sessions offered by the Rangely School District drew more than two dozen teachers and parents to Parkview Elementary School to see the teaching and parenting approach from a fresh perspective.
Registered nurse and Rio Blanco County Public Health Director Colleen Zufelt, who taught the sessions in one-hour blocks throughout the spring semester, wasn’t initially familiar with the material. She became convinced of the value of the approach as she learned more about the philosophy, which offers children choices within boundaries, allows them to make mistakes and encourages learning from real-world consequences.
“I think that Love and Logic really brings about a sense of peace when you’re using it,” said Zufelt, who has taught public education and substituted in the RE-4 district. “You allow your children to do the thinking when it comes to their decisions and the consequences that could come from those. It also allows you to take a step back from the situation and to gain a little perspective. You learn you can say, ‘You know what? I’m going to take care of that, but it doesn’t have to be right now.’”
Jim Fay and Foster Cline developed the program in the late 1970s with connections to education and home life. Since then, Love and Logic materials have expanded to target toddlers, teens and children with health issues.
Fourth-grade teacher Peggy Shoe, who attended most of the RE-4 sessions along with reading the Love and Logic books and attending a Denver seminar, has seen the approach’s effectiveness in the classroom, in the work students do and in the discipline strategies she uses.
One child in her class, for instance, was told he could choose to complete his work or leave it undone. Both options were acceptable; however, not completing the work would mean that he did not attend a park trip planned for later that day. Suddenly, the onus was no longer on Shoe but on the student, who was back in the classroom within minutes, working diligently.
Shoe also gave students choices within boundaries about the in-class work they completed.
“I started gravitating toward students making their own decisions with their assignments,” Shoe said. “That worked really well. They didn’t complain. I said, ‘OK, here’s the page. You choose 15 problems off this page.’…I hope to do a lot more of that in the classroom in the future.”
In contrast to a large seminar or conference gathering, the local sessions provided a more intimate environment in which teachers and parents could explain their struggles and share ways they had applied Love and Logic lessons, said Parkview Elementary secretary Cheri Smith, who attended all five sessions.
Zufelt, a mother of two, said that Love and Logic makes so much sense because it eliminates control struggles that teachers and students, or parents and children, face when choices are not offered or when the only option is the authority figure’s way or the highway.
“We know kids are thinking,” Zufelt said. “But a lot of times they’re thinking about ways to get around what we want them to do. It’s all about control. Love and Logic allows parents to be in control, but it gives kids some control within that.”
The school district plans to offer another Love and Logic series to parents and educators in the fall.

Facebook Notice for EU! You need to login to view and post FB Comments!