Are you a teacher and wondering how you will keep your students in control and learning? Parents, do you receive notes, texts, emails or phone calls from your child’s school about bullying or other behavior problems? Does your child exhibit inappropriate annoying behaviors such as calling out, disrupting a conversation or lesson, making fun of others, hits, hums, taps, burps or make other rude or improper noises or movements?
Children misbehave for a variety of reasons. Some are seeking attention, either positive or negative. Sometimes they misbehave to test the adult to see if they do what they say they will do, some are striving for independence. Still others act badly because they feel bad about themselves. And sometimes they are tired, hungry or sick and need special care. Next time you are met with improper behaviors try these interventions with your child or student. They may serve to help improve their grades and behavior, as well as to reduce bullying.
- Reinforce the student for making appropriate comments with age appropriate tangible or intangible rewards such as special privileges, free time, praise, a handshake or a smile.
- Establish rules in the classroom and at home such as staying on task, working quietly, remain in your seat, and finish the task appropriately. Make sure your child or student is aware of the rules. Discuss them often and reinforce the child for following the rules.
- Remove the student from the activity until they can demonstrate appropriate behaviors. Let the child know what he or she is doing wrong and explain to them what they should be doing and why.
- Assess the appropriateness of the task. Make sure the task is not too hard or too easy. Give the child enough time to respond.
- Give the student opportunities of responsibility. The child may be growing up and looking for a chance to be independent.
- Write a contract with your child or student specifying the expected behavior and outlining the reinforcement that will be received when the agreed upon terms of the contract are met.
Finally, parents make sure that you are communicating with the teacher. In addition, the teacher must communicate with the parents on an ongoing basis to make sure that the behavior is reinforced at home and school. The communication can be done through notes, emails, texts or phone calls. It is necessary for both the parents and teachers to work together to bring about positive change in the child.