Develop positive discourse with students with challenging behavior
Think about what you say to the difficult students in your classroom. Are you constantly bombarding your more challenging students with requests to do something? Do you find yourself constantly asking students to stop doing what they are doing? No one likes being badgered and pestered, and your students are no exception.
- Try to find a time or place when you can have positive discussion with the problem student.
- Notice and mention the positive behaviors they exhibit.
- Remind yourself that even if a challenging student appears unresponsive to your requests, she is hearing the messages that you are giving her. Her responses may not change her immediate behavior but may matter in the long term.
Make extra effort to develop and sustain relationships with difficult students
Difficult students require more energy on your part. For example, you may need to spend time with them individually to get to know them better — to understand their interests as well as what motivates them. This will not only allow you to tailor your instruction to their interests and motivation, but the time spent will also allow them to develop trust in you. Recent research on high school students who have frequent and intense discipline problems shows that when adolescents perceive their teachers are trustworthy people, they show less defiant behavior (Gregory & Ripski, 2008). Persistent teacher-student conflict throughout the elementary years increases the likelihood that children will exhibit negative externalizing behaviors (O’Connor et al., 2012), so it is important for teachers to build close relationships at an early age with children at-risk for behavioral issues.
Source: American Psychological Association