School-Wide Behavior Initiatives

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by KinderCowgirl, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Nov 7, 2012

    We use a behavior system in our specials classes and in the cafeteria at lunch. This year is the first year we've been implementing it. The kids have to be silent for the first 10 minutes of lunch and then can talk quietly at their tables. If they are too loud or talk at all during their silent time they get a warning, then the red card. If any table goes to red, the whole class is given red. Classes with no red cards for the week get an incentive.

    My class is getting too many red cards :(. They know the expectation, they understand the process, I truly believe it's just too difficult for 28 five-year-olds to be silent for 10 minutes-even if they are eating. But that's our system, so we have work within it. My question is, if you've ever used a system like this, what consequence do you give the class? (I don't believe in taking away recess). I also don't particularly like punishing the whole class because I know it's just a few students. I'm just getting so frustrated with them-I go to pick them up and see that red card. Anything that's worked for others who use a similar system?
     
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  3. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Nov 7, 2012

    That is kind of sad. We have colored solo cups (one set for each set of tables, so 2 for the class)- green, yellow, red. The kids start on green and can talk quietly, if they get out of hand they go to yellow, then they can go back to green after 5 minutes or go to red. On red they have to be silent for 5 min to get back to yellow (no going back to green). Each table that is on green earns a sticker each day and when we fill up a sticker chart (25), we get an extra recess. Yellow is no sticker and a class conversation and red is a class consequence. One of my consequences has been to write an apology letter (shared writing) to the cafeteria monitors during math stations (one of their favorite things to do).
     
  4. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Nov 7, 2012

    Kinder---have you tried building their stamina for sitting quietly. Maybe instead of jumping to a consequence (unless you have to) ask the cafeteria workers to keep track of how long before they move to red and celebrate the success of going an extra 30 seconds or minute. You could even send a timer with the students.

    Could a consequence be something along the lines of practicing silent time in the classroom (maybe a worksheet or activity that they need to work on quietly for 2 minutes)? I really would only do something like this if you absolutely need one though. You know it's just not developmentally appropriate for K to be quiet for 10 minutes.
     
  5. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Fanatic

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    Nov 7, 2012

    I have seen this practice in place, and it is crazy. I say, let them talk! It is lunch! If "the powers that be" want them to be calmer, put some classical music on in the background.

    Teachers need to understand that the playground and the cafeteria are okay places for children to talk. In fact, studies show that children learn by talking, so not letting them talk is hurting their learning.
     
  6. AnonyMS

    AnonyMS Habitué

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    Nov 7, 2012

    Silent Lunch makes me see red!

    Why do you have to consequence them? I mean... do TPTB expect you to? I think their consequence was that their card was turned to red. Oh, well.

    I don't think one entity can expect another entity to consequence a behavior that wasn't under their supervision.
     
  7. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    One idea for going to red was for the whole table to sit out of recess for the entire time, even if some of the kids were being good. Also, our recess is in the morning, so that would make it the next day. I always forgot to make them sit out for that :rolleyes:
     
  8. Loomistrout

    Loomistrout Habitué

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    Nov 7, 2012

    One school did a pretty good job solving the noise and goofing off by teachers agreeing to walk their students to and stay in the cafeteria several minutes to supervise. It was tough for the kids to try much with nine teachers standing within inches. As the school year went on the teachers supervised less but took turns spot checking. Yes, the topic of teacher's losing some of their lunch time to supervise came up but in the long run they were saving their break time due to fewer discipline problems. Their focus was on prevention not what to do after the kids messed up. No warnings, no cards and no punishing whole class for deeds of a few.
     
  9. teacherman1

    teacherman1 Devotee

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    Nov 8, 2012

    Totally agree!
    In many schools today kids are being treated like little factory workers. In the last school I taught at, the"powers that be" had even taken away recess to "increase time on task".

    Although our school has has just one 20-minute recess immediately following lunch, it's better than nothing. When I was in elementary school we had a short morning recess, a "lunch-hour" and a mid afternoon recess.

    And you are right, RR, brain-based research shows that kids need the talking and the unstructured time to develop skills critical to academic learning.

    I'm glad my grandchildren are in a private school where they still understand that kids need to be kids. I'm also glad that I will be retiring from this crazy field soon, and won't have to be a party to this madness.

    Teacherman
     
  10. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Nov 8, 2012

    Thank you for your suggestions.

    Mopar-building stamina might be the answer. I know even in the classroom when they are working independently there's a "buzz" and it's not conversations about soccer--it's them sounding out their words or telling a friend they did a good job on their writing-it's just never silent.

    I may start eating lunch with them a few days per week. The problem is I will probably want to talk too :whistle:. Maybe if the aides see me trying to help the situation. We aren't required to have a consequence but they do keep a large chart of who has what color and I hate that my class has so many reds up there. I'm afraid eventually someone will ask what I'm doing to encourage them to stay off red.

    We have a very large cafeteria and 3 aides, so the staggered silent times were supposed to alleviate it from becoming a loud din. I understand the thinking, but as others said it's just not DAP for early chlidhood. I actually like to hear them have conversations with each other-that's how they build social skills. Unfortunately it's one of the only times during the day they would be able to do that.
     
  11. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Nov 8, 2012

    I'm glad that your administration is not requiring a consequence for this behavior.

    Do you talk with your students about different voice levels. We numbered our voice levels (0-silent, 1-whisper, 2-group work, 3-outside voice, 4-assembly). It helps my students when I remind them what voice level they should be at. Now, I only really require silence for the 5-10 minutes of announcements (and we are still working on this).
     
  12. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

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    Nov 8, 2012

    So are they supposed to be silent while other classes are talking? I can imagine that would be very confusing for a little one!
     
  13. meglucy

    meglucy Companion

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    Nov 8, 2012

    Oh my. No talking at lunch? Sharing a meal with others/breaking bread together is part of what makes us human. Today's technology (computers, smartphones, etc.) has already done enough damage to our ability to socialize and communicate with others. We should be teaching children HOW to talk to each other, not prohibiting it.
    Aside from my rant, I agree with Mopar and others. Classical music. Positive reinforcement. Etc. Good luck!
     
  14. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Nov 9, 2012

    Agreed with all who have posted that the "no talking at lunch rule" is ridiculous. I get that it's not the OP's call, though, but is working within a system.
     
  15. teacherman1

    teacherman1 Devotee

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    Nov 9, 2012

    Take that same number of teachers and throw them into the same room.

    Just see if you can keep them quiet....
     
  16. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Nov 9, 2012

    I think we all disagree with this but it isn't the OP's choice.

    What if every time they do not get a red card, immediately after lunch period, you do a special song and dance in class and gush your appreciation and then to further show your appreciation, you play a special but short game in class (which includes talking).
     
  17. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Nov 9, 2012

    I guess it does seem the OP has a choice of whether to do anything about the expectation. I'm not sure I'd have any consequence. Perhaps I'd say something as I picked up the kids, but I'm not sure it would be a battle I'd pick, and sacrifice precious reward time or opportunity for positive interaction for the sake of punishing a behavior which isn't important in the first place.
     
  18. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    Dec 7, 2012

    Not getting an incentive is a consequence.
     
  19. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    Dec 8, 2012

    Ours is the same.
     
  20. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Dec 8, 2012

    Technically, yes. Since they've never received it and they don't really see the other classes getting it (it's not like they do it at an assembly or anything)-they really don't care about it. When I talk to them and say-Ms. Smith's class got popsicles today because of getting all green in the cafeteria, the response was "I have popsicles at home". :whistle:
     
  21. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    Dec 8, 2012

    Maybe if they're good, they can wear ugly holiday sweaters to school.
     

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