The main goal of education is to transform young people into well-rounded and fit individuals who can function well in society. Therefore, in addition to helping students, grading, and teaching lessons, teachers need to know how to manage student behavior. Without enough consideration for behavior management, your classroom can become quite disruptive and chaotic, creating an atmosphere that is not conducive to academic performance and learning. Getting young people to settle down and behave in acceptable ways isn’t always easy, but you can have great success with the right strategies. Here are some great behavior management strategies to use in the classroom.
Engage your class in setting behavioral expectations
Teachers often feel anxious about establishing and enforcing rules that students find arbitrary. Therefore, consider including students in the rule-making process instead of making authoritative rules. Students will feel more responsible for the rules they must follow if everyone participates in their school in the first place. This method is particularly effective with older students such as high school students. These students are strongly prone to frown upon what they view as arbitrary authority, but will likely obey collectively established rules for better control of their day-to-day responsibilities.
Provide quick but subtle corrections
Many experts agree that you need to address any crisis behavior that arises in the classroom as quickly as possible. However, do not stop the class to make these corrections as this goes against the idea of having fixed rules. Therefore, use non-verbal cues to show a problematic student that their demonstrated behavior is off limits. These subtle cues won’t draw attention to the disruptive student, but be prepared to lean over and speak to them directly in a low voice if they seek attention. If the behavior persists, provide direct intervention in private to minimize the impact on other students and reduce the embarrassment of the problematic student. You need to know how to control behaviors such as hitting, kicking, self-harm and destroying the environment when you realize it. That’s why it’s best to go through crisis management training to learn techniques like blocking and clearing the room to deal with problem behaviors.
Allow time for transitions
Students of all ages find it difficult to switch tasks, especially if the tasks are very different. For example, going from self-directed study to a lecture or from physical education to science can be quite unpleasant. It is not uncommon for students to become frustrated without adequate transition time as they mentally have to skip to the last lesson before moving on to the next. This frustration can manifest itself in various behaviors that come under the heading of “acting out”. Therefore, build transition cues into lessons and allow plenty of time for students to settle in before introducing the next task or topic.
Make lessons engaging
Disruptive classroom behavior can occur simply because students are bored. This is because monotonous lessons bring out the worst in people, so make your class activities stimulating to reduce the likelihood of bad behavior. You can simply restructure your activities to engage your students and include lots of hands-on activities throughout the lesson. Also vary your teaching methods and include plenty of aids to make lessons more interactive.
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