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The Nurtured Heart Approach

What is Nurtured Heart?

Nurtured Heart is a program we are committed to in order to help students experience academic and social success.

The Goals of the Nurtured Heart Approach

  • Increase positive teacher/student interactions as a way of supporting self-esteem development
  • Teach appropriate behaviors while also nurturing the development of a positive self-concept or inner wealth
  • Reduce behavior problems that interfere with learning time

The Focus of the Nurtured Heart Approach

  • Positively affirm students appropriate behavior
  • Help students experience academic and social success

Nurtured Heart Vocabulary


A “Reset” begins when the child stops the negative behavior and quiets down. The child is congratulated on successfully extinguishing the negative behavior and successfully completing the reset.

"The power of a reset is not in how punitive or drastic it is, but rather in how 'clean' it is."

A clean time-out is de-energized, with a rapid return to the pursuit of success -- much like a penalty in a video game or sports. Specific positive feedback is given! (no negative attention given)


  • Level 1- when students are not following behavior expectations they are given an opportunity for a reset
  • Level 2- students who refuse to reset of have substantial resets during the morning or afternoon will be sent to a Buddy Room
  • Level 3- Loss of recess
  • Level 4- referral to assistant principal or principal


An absolute is a behavior choice by the student that is non-negotiable and negates the students opportunity to do a Reset.


  • No Physical Abuse, hurting, or fighting (real or “play fighting”)
  • No weapons (real or play)
  • No throwing rocks/objects
  • No serious disrespect toward people or property (includes, but is not limited to: profanity, racial slurs, sexual harassment, deliberately refusing to follow a staff directive, graffiti, etc.)
  • No theft


  • Each time a student violates an Absolute, a “Discipline Slip” will be sent home with the child.
  • Each time a student violates an Absolute, a student will be called to the office to meet with the Principal or Assistant Principal.
  • In accordance with APS Student Behavior Handbook, a violation of the Absolute may constitute a formal suspension. Otherwise, a student will miss recess(es).
  • Students must have the Discipline Slip signed and returned the following day. Otherwise they will miss all recesses until the form is signed and returned.
  • Several violations of Absolutes will result in a meeting with the parent, teacher, counselor, and principal to complete a functional behavior assessment and determine a behavior intervention plan.