Schools today can often feel stressful for both pupils and teachers. Too many children feel anxious in our classrooms, due to high levels of bullying, exclusion, outbursts and acts of aggression and unkindness. Simple behaviour management strategies are ineffective when children behave unkindly to each other as the problem is rarely resolved. Therefore, we must find more creative and successful ways of addressing these issues.
Trained by Dr Karl Heinz Brisch, I am a B.A.S.E. ® Babywatching Group Leader and I am able to bring this low-cost programme to your school. B.A.S.E. stands for Babywatching Against Aggression and Anxiety, for Sensitivity and Empathy.
What is B.A.S.E. ® Babywatching?
Developed by Dr Brisch, B.A.S.E. ® Babywatching is a surprisingly simple yet beautifully effective programme used most often in a classroom, although it can also be effective in smaller group settings. The programme is designed to help children access their empathy through regularly observing a mother (or father) and baby, as their secure attachment relationship develops. By closely watching empathic and sensitively attuned exchanges between parents and babies, children experience empathy internally within themselves. Studies have shown that this awareness of their growing relationship has been found to reduce the children's aggression and anxiety and increase their sensitivity and ability to empathise.
As quoted on the UK B.A.S.E website, "We observe that children are fascinated watching the mother and baby; mothers consistently say how much they enjoy the experience; babies seem to revel in the calm time with their mother’s or father’s undivided attention. Babies also respond with delight at the children’s beaming smiles of admiration when they achieve some new skill. (…) Babywatching is deceptively simple and provides powerful opportunities for learning by doing."
Where & how are groups run?
B.A.S.E. ® Babywatching takes place in Nursery Schools, Primary, Secondary and Special Schools and many other smaller groups.
First, we would find a mother or father and their young baby to visit the classroom or group for the first year of the baby’s life. During weekly 20-30min sessions, the children observe how the parent and baby interact and get to know each other. As the Group Leader, I will help the children watch and wonder about what the parent and baby might be thinking and feeling. They also start to be curious about how they themselves feel as they watch parent and baby together.
How can this programme benefit your school?
As research has shown, regularly observing a parent and baby's growing relationship can increase children's sensitive awareness of themselves and of others. According to parents, teachers and children themselves, they experience positive effects from the B.A.S.E. programme: anxiety and aggressive acts such as bullying are reduced; sleep, concentration and focus improved; and children showed more kindness towards one another.
After an initial year leading groups in your school, your teaching staff can also train to become Group Leaders themselves. I can then mentor them and in this cost-effective way, your school can become self-sufficient in Babywatching in two years.
If you would like to bring the B.A.S.E. ® Babywatching programme to your school, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill in the form on the 'Contacts' page and I will be happy to answer any queries.