Today, we were playing a game in pairs when I heard a cry and saw one of the most silent girls on the floor. Although I could guess what has happened, I asked the girl. Yes, it was her partner who pushed her down. At first, I took care of the girl, asked if she was alright, and calmed her down. She was soon feeling OK so it was time to talk with the boy. I believe, whatever the problem is, the best way to talk to a student is one-to-one. So, I took the boy out of the classroom and talked about his behavior. He agreed on his bad behavior and apologized to her for pushing her down.
If you are teaching young and very young learners, it is likely to have such things in the classroom. There are some things I do to deal with such kids. The first thing as I mentioned before, is to take the child out of the classroom and talk one-to-one. When you do so , the kid gets the feeling “This is serious!” and still you don’t embarrass the child in front of their friends.
Sometimes it takes more than a talk with the student. If the kid insists on bad behavior, another way is to make them sit away from their friends and tell them to think about their behavior. 5 -10 minutes later go back to the kid, ask what they figured out and discuss about it. You can also role play the situation both in a negative and positive way. (What is done and what should have been done?) When role playing, you should be the bad behaving one to emphasize how the other one is feeling so that the kid can empathize.
If you think the kid’s behavior is becoming chronic, you can start an award program to emphasize and support the positive behavior. This may be a sticker program, where the kid gets stickers when well behaving or you can also let them help you for a couple of situations. You can ask them to call the roll for you or take the books back you to the library. They will like being an authority and will work really hard to keep it.
There may be some kids to whom none of these techniques work. If nothing seems to work, then of course, you should better share the problem to the Guidance-Counseling Department in your school and ask for some help.
Above all, the most important thing when you deal with behavior problems is to inform and involve the parents, so that you can get support and the process may be shorter and easier.
Crossposted in SEETA , 16 December,2010