Dealing With Children\\\'s Bad Behaviour - The Secret is to Not Allow
Jan 8, 2010 Classroom Management 5006 Views
One of the best parts of my job in managing children's extreme behaviour problems is seeing adults in schools becoming increasingly confident in dealing with behaviour and managing kids who previously they felt were unmanageable.
I have a year 5 boy in my class who has has displayed appalling behaviour problems in the past. Only a few months ago he was on the point of being permanently excluded from mainstream school. All manner of professionals had been involved to try and rectify the situation but nothing had worked. The school had come to the conclusion that nothing could be done and the child was beyond help.
Then I became involved. When I read the advice that had been given by other professionals, I was horrified. It was completely wrong -- it was actually dangerous to the child and the adults who were expected to follow this 'advice'. I come across this problem so often -- people who couldn't manage the behaviour themselves going into schools and misleading others. The result is child's behaviour worsens, school staff become increasingly stressed and disillusioned and the situation descends into chaos.
This is exactly what happened with this little guy. The first thing I told school was to rip up the previous advice and gave them a plan of action. Of course, things don't get better immediately even though invariably the child is fine in my classes. I just don't allow situations to get to that position -- having100% faith and confidence in my behaviour management techniques is a great help! The school, because they have unwittingly allowed the child to have control, are now trying to turn around the situation from a position of weakness.
Not long after the start of this child's placement with me the head teacher said she was going to permanently exclude the child as she didn't have the skill to manage this level of behaviour.
What a ridiculous thing for an adult to say -- this kid is eight years old for heavens sake!! Excluding a child rarely works -- more about that another time!
I told her that if she worked with me and I would offer them all the support they needed and they would learn effective behaviour management skills. Fortunately, she had heard about my work and gave me (and more importantly, the child!) a chance to turn the situation around.
So back to today. Things aren't perfect but the violence, aggression and total disruption has stopped. I was welcomed by the head teacher who said the boy's class was due in the hall for a table tennis lesson. There had been a problem with his behaviour earlier that afternoon, so she'd told him confidently that if he didn't behave well there would be a consequence.
Well done, her! She pre-empted a situation and managed it and prevented any chance of escalation. It was great to listen to her talking so positively about this little boy, who had previously been written off as having no hope and no future in her school.
Thanks to people like this head teacher who listen and are willing to learn how to deal with kids' behaviour effectively, this boy has every chance of achieving well. A bonus for the school that if they are presented with such potentially bad behaviour again they will be confident to deal with it at the earliest possible point and prevent a great deal of stress and unpleasantness.
But what a sad state of affairs that adults allowed the previous situation to happen.
Anybody can learn successful behaviour management. It really isn't that difficult!