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  #1  
Old 12-16-2012, 02:52 PM
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mudpie1598 mudpie1598 is offline
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3rd Grade Behavior Management

I have a VERY tough class this year. It's filled with 5 or 6 extremely (difficult)children, behavior-wise. What suggestions can you give me to keep them well behaved in and outside of the classroom?

I have a card color system, paper money, tickets (for a raffle on Fridays), and I bring treats. I do require for them to be on "green" which is the best behavior color on the cards in order to buy something with the money their earn, in order to be in the raffle, and to be able to get a treat. I thought this would work to push children to be on their best behavior all day, but it doesn't seem to be working.

I am the 4th teacher to be in the class. It was a class composed of an overflow of 6 other classes. Then, two subs filled in the time until they found a permanent teacher. The creme-de-la-creme of worst behavior is in my class. I can control their behavior inside, but outside is a major problem. They are choking kids in the bathrooms, hitting, and just not following directions with other adults. I am doing 2nd step in order to teach them social skills & to get the language such as "empathy" and "feelings/conflicting feelings" being used & knowing what to do with those feelings in an appropriate way, but it doesn't seem to work.

Parents are called when behavior isn't well, which is most of the time. At what point does the bad behavior stop? Any tips, suggestions, help is appreciated. Thanks.

*Kindness & respect is something that should've been taught at home & I'm not seeing this. Yet, I talk to them about it.

My consequences are: Moving to yellow-taking 10 minutes of recess, orange-taking all of recess away red-phone call home talking to parents, parents then give a consequence at home. No treats, tickets, or paper money.

Rewards:Verbal praise, paper money, raffle tickets, marbles (for pizza party, they chose this as their prize) treats, stickers, etc.
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  #2  
Old 12-16-2012, 03:37 PM
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czacza czacza is offline
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Individualzed contracts for those five or six kids?
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  #3  
Old 12-16-2012, 03:46 PM
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I was thinking of that czacza. Maybe individualized contracts that will monitor their behavior outside, before-school, recess, and lunch recess. What are some type of contracts that you use?
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:55 PM
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czacza czacza is offline
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I have one student currently on a contract...each days ontract goes home at the end of the day in. An envelope that the parents sign...I have about 6 benchmark behaviors on the chart with space next to each benchmark for my comments.
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:39 PM
EdEd EdEd is offline
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I think contracts might be overkill. It seems there are really only issues in very specific situations. It seems like most of the time their behavior is good, but they are only misbehaving when there is low supervision and when with other adults.

In terms of bathroom, I'd do 1 at a time to the bathroom (assuming it's a common bathroom) for those 5-6 kids. They can't hit each other if there is no one to hit.

In terms of behavior with other teachers, you're entering complicated territory as you're working with other teachers' systems. Are those teachers willing/open to working with you and asking you for strategies, and will they be willing to implement a consistent strategy across environments?

In terms of your existing system, the first changes I'd consider would be more than just moving to yellow, red, etc. as there aren't enough "stops" in your system in between beginning and end. In other words, it just takes a few minor behaviors to exhaust your entire disciplinary system. With recess, if you have "1 check mark (bad behavior) equals 30 seconds off recess," then you have many more infractions you can give before encountering bankruptcy.

Second, I wouldn't require perfect behavior to spend earned points. Let kids earn points for each positive behavior, and whatever points are earned they can spend. Now you are requiring perfection, which will only lead to frustration. None of your reinforcement is actually in effect because nothing counts until they are perfect all day.

Finally, it's likely that your 5-6 kids misbehaving have separate individual issues, so while it may be helpful to try a group-level intervention, you're likely going to need to consider each child and behavior individually if they don't respond to some basic group strategies.
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:50 PM
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Our school has low supervision during recess & lunch. So, when kids are misbehaving it come back directly to me. I get all these complaints from teachers. "So & so did this to my student in my class" etc... Since my class is the worst behaved one, all the teachers directly believe their students and automatically accuse my kids of doing things. I keep asking the teachers to automatically give the students consequences right then and there such as benching,etc., instead of waiting for the end of recess or the end of the day to come and tell me. Telling me doesn't help me. They should directly be telling those children what they're doing wrong, so it's just not me always telling them but that they see other adults are authoritative figures as well.
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:51 PM
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I feel as if I'm being accused of not being able to control them. Now, it's falling on me "being a bad teacher."
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  #8  
Old 12-28-2012, 06:45 PM
Dr Kevlar Dr Kevlar is offline
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mudpie,
Bearing in mind I am a recent grad and have only my student teaching and a few days as a sub under my belt, I DO have 20+ years as a manger under my belt. Believe me when I tell you that the biggest difference between managing kids and managing adults is that the adults drove to the "office" whereas the kids arrived on the bus.

My thoughts:
1) You have one heck of a lot of programs going both positive and negative. I wonder how effective having many programs can be when you really can't pinpoint, should behavior improve or get worse, which program had what (if any) impact.

2) In re: "contracts." No offense to anyone but these are third graders, not adults. Why "we" as educators/parents think that applying adult concepts to kids and having them sign contracts and such is going to somehow change anything is beyond me. Adults spend millions of dollars breaking or getting out of contracts that they supposedly understand. I do not believe that 8-year-olds get the concept.

3) I am sure that you need the break. But relying on other teachers for recess monitoring is something you need to stop doing. My former specialty in business world was turning around failing work groups. I had groups with bad reps (deserved or not) and so I initially spent 10 - 12 hour days following them around. Where they were, I was present. You say yourself that the other students and teachers see your kids as bad seeds and it is likely true that the other teachers believe ANYTHING they are told. You need to go out there and advocate for your kids. Be present. Let them know you are there to catch them doing something good as well as bad. Otherwise they may just figure: "Well, everyone thinks we are bad so why bother being good?" But maybe if you are seen advocating for them when justified you might get them to realize that you recognize bad AND good behavior.

4) If taking away recess is not working, why keep taking it away? For my way of thinking this fits in with a sign one of my people had at their desk. It read: "The beatings will continue until morale improves." Maybe letting them run their butts off and socialize will help settle them down and they can be disciplined some other way.

I have no skin in this game, but if I were you I would go bare bones. Keep the positive reward simple. Start with something easy to achieve. Move the bar when they consistently achieve it.

Continued...
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  #9  
Old 12-28-2012, 06:56 PM
Dr Kevlar Dr Kevlar is offline
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Now, about the Gang of Six. Without seeing them in action, it seems they are setting the tone for the whole room. You need to let them know that while everyone needs to work together to make things work in the room, YOU are ultimately in charge and YOU will determine what the tone will be.

Keep your communication with them short and to the point.
Don't argue with them. Arguing with them gives them power. Work out a plan with your principal. Hold them to it. By this I mean working out what sorts of things will generate referrals and make them for meaningful actions so that when they go to the office the admin staff takes it seriously and does not say things like "I don't know why she sent you here for this or that?"

I had a young man in my el ed room while student teaching who desperately wanted my attention. I spent increasing amounts of time dealing with his negative behaviors. The more time I spent, the more behaviors he exhibited. the room teacher had a card system and so one day I started to correct him and he said: "Can I go flip a card now?" I finally got it. I said. "No need to bother." I then ignored him. Guess what stopped?

This group is acting and you are reacting - and they are feeding off of it (imho). I apologize if I am off-base here and certainly despite having all of this "experience" I have done some things that have fallen flat on their face in trying to manage my room. sometimes you just have to sit back and ask: "What's the gain?" when considering their behaviors.

Hope things are better for you after the break.
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  #10  
Old 01-30-2013, 05:25 AM
pengyou pengyou is offline
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One thing I find teachers forgetting to do is to take away demerits when students improve in class. This can be a more valuable reward then using some kind of token economy because the students are rewarded/praised in front of their peers..."Ben, you have been sooooo good this past five/ten minutes and were so helpful, I am going to erase the recess minutes you owe me....something like this. Also, my experience with kids like this is that relying on help from home is usually futile - where do you think they learned this behavior? Disrespect/respect is usually learned in the home/primary environment in any society.
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