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Discipline and Behaviour Management Discipline and good behaviour are learned. Students should know what to do and how to do it in all situations. The challenge for teachers is to maintain a positive classroom climate with a minimum of disruptions. Students appreciate teachers who are firm, friendly and professional. 1. Discipline with dignity Aim to have a secure, inviting classroom where the dignity of others is respected. It is helpful to remember that inappropriate behaviour is a purposeful response to a need for either attention, power, revenge or avoidance of failure. Teens want to be treated like adults and respected. Fairness is especially important. 2. Be fair Fairness is very important to adolescents. Students and their teachers may have different perceptions regarding fairness. Students who feel they are treated unfairly need a non- confrontational forum in which to have a discussion. 3. Assist students in taking responsibility for their own learning and behaviour Teachers can help students understand that with rights come responsibilities, and with certain behaviour comes consequences. Encourage your students to be responsible for their own learning and behaviour. 4. Keep rules simple It is important for teens to know what is expected of them. Secondary school classes can come up with their own rules if you wish to take the time to discuss situations either in advance or as they arise and develop rules cooperatively. In these cases, the teacher’s role is to guide the discussion and enforce the “outer limits” for the rules. Generally, rules should be short, simple, precise and consistently administered; be stated in positive terms and help create a positive non-threatening environment. Examples of simple rules include the following: show up on time and prepared for class do assignments on time respect your own and others' spaces. 5. Keep consequences simple. Deal only with what you see in a consistent and calm manner. Teenagers must know not only their rights but their responsibilities, including the responsibility to respect the rights of others and to become actively and positively involved in their own learning. Generally, consequences should be clear, specific and related to a rule include a range of alternatives be natural or logical and age appropriate not be a punishment. 6. Try to resolve discipline problems through problem-solving processes Students who experience logical and realistic consequences learn that they can have positive control over their lives. Try to examine student-related and teacher-related reasons for which there may be discipline problems. Check with colleagues and your school administrator to ensure that you have support for your discipline and behaviour management plan. Remember... to say what you mean. Mean what you say. Do what you said you would do. Tell me and I'll forget. Show me and I may not remember. Involve me and I'll understand. (Author unknown) 7. Other aspects to consider Following are some ideas that may help reduce classroom conflict. It is helpful for the teacher to be in the classroom when students arrive be organized and prepared before each lesson insist that everyone, including guests, be treated with respect listen to student opinions and consider their feelings help students to maintain their sense of humour and tolerant attitude help students to develop decision-making skills help students to live with mistakes and take them in stride show faith in the student and build on strengths encourage the development of a positive climate to enhance students' ability to value themselves believe that all students are lovable and capable aim to be consistent, matter of fact and calm use realistic, logical consequences, and reinforce them try to be firm and fair.
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