Strategies for Responding to Misbehavior

Classroom Management Strategies for Responding to Misbehavior
Photo © 2009 Mindaugas Danys, Flickr

No matter how hard you work to prevent problems, it is inevitable that a student will do something that you find unacceptable. When faced with misbehavior, here are a few things to keep in mind...

  1. Misbehavior can be disruptive and distracting in a learning environment. However, sometimes our 'interventions' can be just as disruptive. When faced with misbehavior that needs to be corrected, attempt to address the situation with a minimum of disruption - keeping instruction and learning going.
  2. Never belittle, embarrass, or humiliate a disruptive student. Always address the situation calmly, moving the discussion away from classmates if possible, and avoid creating a scene where the student may feel the need to act out in order to assert power or save face in front of their friends.
  3. Consider the classroom environment and the context of the behavior to determine if a misbehavior has occurred. If a student has broken the rules, harmed another student, or continues to disrupt learning {the very business of a classroom!} - in other words, if the behavior is deemed unacceptable - remedy the situation with a logical consequence that reflects the nature and severity of the offense. While many corrections may be situational, consider instituting a hierarchy of consequences to pull from.

Misbehavior can unbalance even the most well-meaning teacher. Considering these tips, and having a game plan for dealing with disruptions before being faced with them, is sure to make things go more smoothly!


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