In the last Lucy blog, we saw the beginnings of social referencing when Lucy was looking at my face for the information regarding whether it was time to turn the page or not. Our co-regulatory roles were me = reader, Lucy = page-turner. In terms of the our activity goal (reading the book) each of us needed the other to step into their role otherwise the goal could not be reached. That is co-regulation......where a role action is contingent upon, but not controlled by, the other partner's role action. I wasn't telling Lucy when to turn and she wasn't telling me how to read (that would be controlling), rather, we were each waiting for the other to finish their turn before taking our own turn.
We can see from this example how co-regulation is crucial for co-operation and team-working.
Since the last Lucy blog, we had several sessions where we started to get some resistance from Lucy. After analysing our footage, having team chats and consulting with Sharon (our external 'moderator' RDI Consultant), we think this is because we had sometimes been using the social referencing in a more imperative way, so Lucy was perceiving the referencing as a demand. We dropped the co-regulatory ball!! It's so easy to do when you're not being fully mindful.
I decided to have a go at baking with Lucy, as there are usually plenty of opportunities during baking for competence and fun. Here is what happened. My analysis of the session is in black and Sharon's feedback is in blue:
I set out the baking framework then give Lucy the sugar role.
Some emotion-sharing seen here.
Lucy brings the chair closer - she is really interested in this :)
I give L the spoon and the role of putting the marg into the bowl, which I have to scaffold and model.
This looks good the only possible difference would be to 'self-talk' rather than say what to do.
I narrate our roles then start a chant.
Great thing to do here as she is already starting to move to the sound of the sugar moving in the bowl..... interesting! Zoe I think for a first time this is great. What you might want to think about another time is adding some pauses, lifting the spoon, adding anticipation around your action / sounds & chant to sneak in some experience sharing moments.
I celebrate: 'we did.........(pause to enable referencing).....the creamy mix!'
I say I need to put my glasses on. Lucy says 'Zoe got....Jo got glasses' (is she mixing us up??)
Not sure, maybe something to keep an eye on.
I give Lucy the eggs and the spoon. She starts to stir on my chant.
I move Lucy's hair and she stops at this point - she doesn't like the touch?? Or she perceives this as a demand??
Zoe I've watched this bit back a few times & am not sure either. I also wonder whether she has realised you have stopped chanting & so is stopping her action in line with this?? Whether that look was social referencing as in 'Oh, should I have stopped?'
She switches on really quickly when you say 'ready for the next bit', really attentive.
I give Lucy the role of pouring and she pours. I chant and then use different speeds for chanting and stirring (chanting at different speeds is one way of enabling a student to co-regulate with your speed, without being instructive. I am just trying this out to see if she registers it).
I think she could be quite 'rhythmic/musical' & you've hit on something here! As above I think adding pauses around the changes would spotlight both the change but also add anticipation for emotion-sharing.
I give Lucy the role of pouring the flour. Lucy tastes the mix and references around this. She references me after I move the bowl away. I suggest choc chips.......is that a study response...? (Ed's note - a study response shows someone thinking about something before they make a decision about what to do).
Wow this whole segment is GREAT! And yes that looks like studying to me too.
I don't know if she knows what I mean by choc chips so I suggest we go into the kitchen to have a look at them so that we can decide.
End of analysis and feedback. I was really relieved at the end of this session that we had managed to get back on the 'co-regulatory horse'. I felt I had achieved my goal of being as invitational as possible and ensuring that Lucy was not perceiving any demands that might trigger resistance.
Baking is such a great activity for guiding as it presents lots of role combinations (you pour, I stir; we both stir at the same time; I stir then you stir etc.) that lead to feelings of competence and success. Plus there are cakes to eat at the end :)