Love and Logic

Love and logic is a management philosophy used by teachers and parents.  Its base premise is that kids should be taught (and modeled) how to take ownership of their choices by dealing with the consequences of their choices.  It also encourages teachers and parents to model how to set boundaries without trying to control situations that, at the end of the day, they can’t control.  The win-win is that kids learn to think through their choices, and to understand the pros and cons of those choices.  For adults, it helps to avoid power struggles with kids as well as to not spend more energy than they do.

I first heard about this philosophy from one of my coworkers.  She used love and logic in her classroom and I liked what I saw.  She gave me some articles that introduced the philosophy and gave some examples of how to implement this in the classroom.  The first thing that I’ve did was to change the language on my syllabus.  I went from telling the kids what to do, to telling them what I was going to do.  Obviously there’s a few things that have to be set down firmly to maintain order.  Though instead of telling them to turn their homework in on time I simply told them that I would grade assignments for full credit when they are turned in on time.  This puts it on the student to figure when to get the work in for full credit.

I got this book a year ago and finally made myself read it.  I’ve used bits and pieces of this classroom management philosophy, but the book does a good job of building from philosophy to practice. Sometimes their dialogues are a little forces, but it’s clear what they are treating to convey. The big takeaway from this philosophy is that it’s so easy to implement because it starts with you. You decide what your limits and boundaries are and what you’re going to do about it. You give some control to gain control. Once you understand the philosophy it can also work outside the classroom.  It’s a good communication tool to use when working with difficult people or during conflict management.  Frankly, if more people were to use it I think there’d be less shouting in the world.  But that’s just me generalizing.

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