The Forbidden Word: Naughty.
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    Default The Forbidden Word: Naughty.

    Do you use the word "naughty" in your setting? After working in nurseries/schools for around 6 years I got used to NEVER using it and eventually when I heard it I would react as if I'd heard someone swear. I decided that I agree with the principle and hate the idea of labeling, so to me now it seems completely natural not to use it. Though, is it really that bad?

    At the moment I'm dealing with the fact that one of my minded children is using it and she's taught it to my 2.5 yr old, who in turn is using it back on her! I'm stood in the background saying "we don't' use that word here" but it doesn't make a bit of difference and I'm sure that no one would believe me.

    What are everyone's opinions on it?

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    I to worked in a nursery for many years and it was definitely a word we never used, and still I would seldom use it. I see it as a negative word!

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    No I don't I use it, and never did for y own who are now 13&10!

    I actually spoke to one of my parents this week as her dd called my dog naughty(for snoring lol) more to make sure she knew it hadn't come from me! Mum was very surprised when I explained why I felt the need to say not me lol! But understood

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    I will call an action naughty but I have never called a child naughty, even my own. So if someone say hits someone else I might say "that's naughty" but not "you're naughty". I do not think it does any harm to use the N word so long as we are not labelling the child.

    I have a time-out space, where children can go and calm down or have a think but they all call it the "naughty step" even though I NEVER call it that. They obviously get it from home.

    xx

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    Quote Originally Posted by AliceK View Post
    I will call an action naughty but I have never called a child naughty, even my own. So if someone say hits someone else I might say "that's naughty" but not "you're naughty". I do not think it does any harm to use the N word so long as we are not labelling the child.

    I have a time-out space, where children can go and calm down or have a think but they all call it the "naughty step" even though I NEVER call it that. They obviously get it from home.

    xx
    I too have a time out step. We just call it "the step".

    I actually used the N word today - pretty much by accident, as I try to NEVER use it, but I quickly corrected myself so that the phrase I used was "that behaviour is naughty. You are going on the step" - having been warned off for similar behaviour a few minutes earlier.

    It felt really uncomfortable saying it, but the behaviour really was naughty!!! (Trying to kick another much smaller child who was attempting to climb onto a sofa off of it, as first small person was trying to hold dominion over it.)



    LK

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    Quote Originally Posted by greenfaerie View Post
    Do you use the word "naughty" in your setting? After working in nurseries/schools for around 6 years I got used to NEVER using it and eventually when I heard it I would react as if I'd heard someone swear. I decided that I agree with the principle and hate the idea of labeling, so to me now it seems completely natural not to use it. Though, is it really that bad?

    At the moment I'm dealing with the fact that one of my minded children is using it and she's taught it to my 2.5 yr old, who in turn is using it back on her! I'm stood in the background saying "we don't' use that word here" but it doesn't make a bit of difference and I'm sure that no one would believe me.

    What are everyone's opinions on it?
    Never use it either to children or to refer to behaviour....unacceptable is more appropriate.

    There was a TV programme recently called 'Born Naughty'....all those children were found to have a reason for their behaviour...I agree with those who hate lables

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    Sorry, but the word naughty doesn't bother me.

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    I have to say that I think it's PC gone mad when you can't refer to a child's BEHAVIOUR as naughty if it really is. It's another matter however if you label a child a "naughty child" as this may end up a self fulfilling prophecy and do damage long term.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mumofone View Post
    I have to say that I think it's PC gone mad when you can't refer to a child's BEHAVIOUR as naughty if it really is. It's another matter however if you label a child a "naughty child" as this may end up a self fulfilling prophecy and do damage long term.
    I agree with you in part on what you say...but what does 'naughty' actually mean?
    Can behaviour be naughty or a bit more than that?...such as: unacceptable, dangerous, unkind, disruptive, self centred and so on...why stick the wrong label when you can use the appropriate word which the children can reflect on?

    Say a child is going through a tantrum and throws a toy the other side of the room...telling that child is naughty does not address the behaviour...you have just labelled the child and nothing else but not told him/her why you don't accept the actions....that throwing toys can be dangerous etc etc etc.

    I know we all differ in opinions but I would not like to be labelled naughty myself as I would dislike being referred to as 'EAL' when in fact I am bilingual.

    We seem to have labels for every sort of situation for children...sorry I really dislike labels .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post
    I agree with you in part on what you say...but what does 'naughty' actually mean?
    .
    Good question.

    Boring etymological fact: originally the word meant "without value" - closely related and possibly derived from the old Saxon word "niding" (pro. "nithing"), meaning "without honour."

    Ok, not something I'd want to "label" a child. But words come and go, and meanings change over time. Typically, words like "professional", "friend", "rude", etc. bear very little relation to what they meant a generation ago or less.

    I personally think the trendy, "right-on" fad for avoiding what is rapidly becoming the new 'N-word' says a lot more about the adult than the child. Viz, a desire to appear pc and oh-so-up-to-date with the new thinking. Looking on the bright side, we'll probably only have to tolerate this particular piece of 'clever' nonsense until the next fashion comes along to replace it (like time in, time out, time shake it all about and do the hokey-flippin'-cokey while you're at it....... )

    It is a trend which seems to have passed children by and can only make the adult/parent/EY practitioner look a little bit stupid. Why? Because it ignores the basics of communication: that what we say may not be what the child hears and understands.

    Preschool children simply do not have the linguistic skills to perceive the subtle difference between a description of the person and a description of their behaviour. So all this 'clever' verbal circumlocution is completely lost on the child. Teachers do not tell children they are "bad" or "naughty". But they still get complaints from trendy mummies whose children come home and tell them "my teacher says I'm bad" when teacher actually as describing their behaviour and not a character flaw. My mindees come home and tell me "so-and-so was told off for being naughty today", not "so-and-so was told her behaviour was unacceptable for the following reasons............" It's what they understand.

    EY practitioners, educational "experts" and all the rest of the band are always happy to avoid "labelling". But they still use labels just as much, only in the opposite way. Everything is "amazing" and everyone is so "good" in this overpoweringly "positive" world. It's like a bunch of over-qualified Mr Tumbles constantly screaming "we're all friends!" in the lo's ears and overpraising them til the cows come home. Is this any better?

    Well, sing it to Officer Krupke and tell it to the judge. At least they won't suffer the ignominy of their future residence being called "the naughty prison".

    I suspect we're going to bring up a generation to believe they're amazing and good and can never do wrong. Presumably, history classes will push the view that Hitler was just badly misunderstood; Pol Pot was really a nice man who just a happened to do a few (million) "bad things"; the Krays would've turned out fine if only their mum had ben a bit more 'positive' towards them (.................oh hang on, Mrs Kray thought the world of the twins: maybe that was the problem........?)
    Last edited by bunyip; 10-07-2015 at 10:59 AM.

  14. #11
    Simona Guest

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    For me personally this has nothing at all to do with 'political correctness' or whether naughty is fashionable or otherwise....or whatever the next trendy word will be.

    What about those parents who do not wish any labels imposed on their child...I have had lengthy discussions with them and respect their wishes while reassuring them labels are not stuck on their children...try reassuring a mother whose child is referred to as 'special needs'
    By those who cannot see past the disability.

    Last but not least...what about the children themselves...do they like those labels or constantly being referred to as ....for example....girly, princess, typical boy, EAL, disadvantaged, mummy's boy, daddy's girl, biter, screamer ,fussy eater, difficult, bright, ADHD, Down Syndrome, Special Needs' ...I could go on.

    I recall very well the distress caused to a child who was constantly called a 'tomboy' until one day she told the other children to stop calling her so.....lesson learnt by all children and adults!
    Words indeed come and go but the labels often stick.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bunyip View Post
    Good question.

    Boring etymological fact: originally the word meant "without value" - closely related and possibly derived from the old Saxon word "niding" (pro. "nithing"), meaning "without honour."

    Ok, not something I'd want to "label" a child. But words come and go, and meanings change over time. Typically, words like "professional", "friend", "rude", etc. bear very little relation to what they meant a generation ago or less.

    I personally think the trendy, "right-on" fad for avoiding what is rapidly becoming the new 'N-word' says a lot more about the adult than the child. Viz, a desire to appear pc and oh-so-up-to-date with the new thinking. Looking on the bright side, we'll probably only have to tolerate this particular piece of 'clever' nonsense until the next fashion comes along to replace it (like time in, time out, time shake it all about and do the hokey-flippin'-cokey while you're at it....... )

    It is a trend which seems to have passed children by and can only make the adult/parent/EY practitioner look a little bit stupid. Why? Because it ignores the basics of communication: that what we say may not be what the child hears and understands.

    Preschool children simply do not have the linguistic skills to perceive the subtle difference between a description of the person and a description of their behaviour. So all this 'clever' verbal circumlocution is completely lost on the child. Teachers do not tell children they are "bad" or "naughty". But they still get complaints from trendy mummies whose children come home and tell them "my teacher says I'm bad" when teacher actually as describing their behaviour and not a character flaw. My mindees come home and tell me "so-and-so was told off for being naughty today", not "so-and-so was told her behaviour was unacceptable for the following reasons............" It's what they understand.

    EY practitioners, educational "experts" and all the rest of the band are always happy to avoid "labelling". But they still use labels just as much, only in the opposite way. Everything is "amazing" and everyone is so "good" in this overpoweringly "positive" world. It's like a bunch of over-qualified Mr Tumbles constantly screaming "we're all friends!" in the lo's ears and overpraising them til the cows come home. Is this any better?

    Well, sing it to Officer Krupke and tell it to the judge. At least they won't suffer the ignominy of their future residence being called "the naughty prison".

    I suspect we're going to bring up a generation to believe they're amazing and good and can never do wrong. Presumably, history classes will push the view that Hitler was just badly misunderstood; Pol Pot was really a nice man who just a happened to do a few (million) "bad things"; the Krays would've turned out fine if only their mum had ben a bit more 'positive' towards them (.................oh hang on, Mrs Kray thought the world of the twins: maybe that was the problem........?)
    If I could like a post several times over, I would!
    Use naughty to describe behaviour in my setting and for the above reasons so eloquently explained by Bunyip.
    I would go further to explain my reasons why but I have a playgroup run to do.

    I replied to this thread for a reason though, and that is people referring to the word naughty as 'the N-word'. I find this rude and "unacceptable". The 'N-word' is used to describe a horrendously racist word and giving the term a new meaning minimises its original use and infers that the actual n-word is on a par with naughty. It's not. It's not even on the same planet of unacceptable use. Please stop referring to naughty as the n-word.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post
    For me personally this has nothing at all to do with 'political correctness' or whether naughty is fashionable or otherwise....or whatever the next trendy word will be.

    What about those parents who do not wish any labels imposed on their child...I have had lengthy discussions with them and respect their wishes while reassuring them labels are not stuck on their children...try reassuring a mother whose child is referred to as 'special needs'
    By those who cannot see past the disability.

    Last but not least...what about the children themselves...do they like those labels or constantly being referred to as ....for example....girly, princess, typical boy, EAL, disadvantaged, mummy's boy, daddy's girl, biter, screamer ,fussy eater, difficult, bright, ADHD, Down Syndrome, Special Needs' ...I could go on.

    I recall very well the distress caused to a child who was constantly called a 'tomboy' until one day she told the other children to stop calling her so.....lesson learnt by all children and adults!
    Words indeed come and go but the labels often stick.
    That is quite an impressive list Simona.

    How about these? unacceptable, dangerous, unkind, disruptive, self centred and so on..

    Still labels from a person who dislikes labels.

    Sorry to be picky but I dont understand your logic on this subject. You yourself dislike labels but have added a good list yourself. Anyone can assume that a descriptive word is a label. Whether that was the originators intention or otherwise.

    It is all subjective and open to interpretation IMO

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    Quote Originally Posted by shortstuff View Post
    That is quite an impressive list Simona.

    How about these? unacceptable, dangerous, unkind, disruptive, self centred and so on..

    Still labels from a person who dislikes labels.

    Sorry to be picky but I dont understand your logic on this subject. You yourself dislike labels but have added a good list yourself. Anyone can assume that a descriptive word is a label. Whether that was the originators intention or otherwise.

    It is all subjective and open to interpretation IMO
    I agree.

    I've not be a CM long, but it didn't take long to figure out that a word is only a "label" if you don't like somebody else using it.

    .............and "good practice" means "in agreement with me."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Simona View Post
    For me personally this has nothing at all to do with 'political correctness' or whether naughty is fashionable or otherwise....or whatever the next trendy word will be.

    What about those parents who do not wish any labels imposed on their child...I have had lengthy discussions with them and respect their wishes while reassuring them labels are not stuck on their children...try reassuring a mother whose child is referred to as 'special needs'
    By those who cannot see past the disability.

    Last but not least...what about the children themselves...do they like those labels or constantly being referred to as ....for example....girly, princess, typical boy, EAL, disadvantaged, mummy's boy, daddy's girl, biter, screamer ,fussy eater, difficult, bright, ADHD, Down Syndrome, Special Needs' ...I could go on.

    I recall very well the distress caused to a child who was constantly called a 'tomboy' until one day she told the other children to stop calling her so.....lesson learnt by all children and adults!
    Words indeed come and go but the labels often stick.
    What about the parents who use the word "naughty" at home? Are we to ride roughshod over their chosen 'style of parenting'? Are we to confuse the child by letting them hear one thing at home and the opposite at the CM's? We're never going to replicate the home situation, but does it help to be inconsistent for the sake of our personal dogma?

    Your list includes bona fide clinical terms, and I've known parents shed tears of relief when they actually got to hear such a diagnosis after years of struggling.

    Typically, "special needs" was a fashionable term to replace something else that went before and got dropped because all the smarty-pants decided it was an inappropriate "label". So now we have "Special Educational Needs" (means exactly the same thing, but comes with an easy-to-dispense acronym, which always helps in the weird world of EY). Well, at least we have it until the new-improved replacement term comes along.

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  23. #16
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    The OP asked what was our opinion on using the word naughty.
    I have given my personal opinion on why I do not use it...whether the list is impressive or otherwise...or my faulty logic... it is my choice not to use it....yes I consider it a label.

    Others can use it if they wish and if they believe it addresses what is usually a behavioural matter.

    And no Bunyip...it is not a label because others use it...it is what I believe in
    If parents wish to use the word....I would not stop them...their choice.

    and I never referred or alluded to the racist word....nor did I refer to good practice.

    British Values= respect for others opinions too....I differ from others involved in this discussion but accept your reasoning behind it ...plenty of people share my view.

    To tell a child his action is dangerous is factual if he throws toys ...and it has consequences...does naughty have a consequence?
    Last edited by Simona; 10-07-2015 at 12:01 PM.

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    There are several words I just cannot bring myself to use in ever day life, not just in childminding.

    One of them is "naughty". I don't really know why, but it doesn't sit comfortably with me. I might think it my head, but I never say it to a child. I say they're being unkind or not very nice or that they're doing something that I don't like, but I'll never say they are naughty or what they're doing is naughty. I guess it's probably come from some training I've been on at some point and it's always stuck with me

    Another word I can't us is "posh". My junior school teacher always told us it was an awful word and we were never to us it...and I don't

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    I fear the avoidance of any kind of criticism at all breeds kids like the 6 year old I look after. Completely oblivious to others feelings she bulldozes her way through all situations probably because her parents have never told her she is being rude or naughty. She's constantly told she's wonderful and doesn't hear anything else.

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    Have you heard the story in the news today about the kid who got his mouth washed out with soap....his mum apparently said "all kids act like this". I'm sorry but I would have said he had been incredibly naughty (and other choice words!).

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    I don't see any harm with the word 'naughty'. IMO it's ridiculous the who-haa the word causes.

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