Classroom misbehavior is perhaps the most common problem faced by teachers and the best way to deal with it is to first find the reason behind this. Once the root cause of misbehavior is found, it can become very easy for a teacher to diffuse poor and nasty behavior of a student. Students generally show negative behavior to:
Most of the students show a negative misbehavior in class just to grab attention of others. To get attentions, students become either argumentative or do funny things in class. Other attention-getting behaviors may include disrupting lecture, talking too much and asking for favors. Some students continue this behavior even if it leads to insult or punishment. The best thing a teacher can do in response of such behavior is to avoid becoming annoyed and ignore it.
Some students want to be in charge of everything. To reach their goal, such students become disruptive and offensive. Student disobeys teacher, does not cooperate with teacher and other students and disturbs the class. Such misbehavior by a student can make a teacher feel threatened or challenged by that particular student. Such behavior can be dealt with giving a student power by making him leader of a group.
When students fail to get attention or power, they show revenge-seeking behavior. Such students always remain angry and defiant and they just want to hurt teacher, other students or even their parents. Revenge of such students can be shown in form of physical or psychological attack. This behavior of students is reinforced if teachers show that they have been really hurt by this behavior.
Students can also show a negative behavior in class if they feel themselves inferior or inadequate in some way. I can explain this with help of an example. If a difficult assignment is given to student and he feels himself unable to do it, he intentionally misbehaves in class so that he may be sent out of classroom. He thinks that by doing this, he can avoid the difficult task and consequently avoid embarrassment in front of other students.
These reasons of misbehavior seem to be very serious but teachers can remove these by meeting needs of such students. Such students are in need of emotional support which teachers can easily provide them.
No doubt, teaching is a rewarding career but at the same time it is challenging. Especially new teachers find it very difficult to manage the class and maintain discipline. Actually classroom management is a skill which can not be learnt but practiced. Here some tips are given for successful class management:
- As a teacher, you will definitely want to establish a disciplined and productive environment. To make it possible, create rules and inform students on limits and boundaries. Let them know that certain behaviors will not be tolerated in classroom. On first day of class, inform students about all rules along with consequences of breaking those rules. To help students establish your expected and desired behavior pattern, create routines and structures.
- Enforce your rules without exceptions. To make it possible, adopt a positive reinforcement method. Reward those students who behave well and according to your expectations. Remark on good behavior of a student to other students in class. You can also reward the whole class for showing good behavior. Reward system does not need to be very expensive and elaborate. For good behavior or high grades, pass out stickers or play money etc.
- Be consistent in terms of enforcing your rule. It should not happen that you ignore misbehavior of a student one day and very next day you punish a student for a little mistake. Your students will loose respect and esteem for you if you will do so.
- If your one or more of your students are misbehaving in class, try to know reason behind it. Reasons for misbehavior are many. Some students simply want attention while some have other problems. Try to help such students out with cooperation of other teachers in school. Boredom in class can also lead to misbehavior so to avoid it, keep the students busy. Create interesting assignments and activities for students.
- Being a teacher, you can stop disruptions in class with a little humor. Teachers often confuse humor with mockery and sarcasm. Humor can make the situation better while sarcasm can spoil your relationship with your students.
- Always be excited and fervent about whatever you do in class. Your excited and engaged behavior will encourage your students to do the same. If you are exhausted, even then pretend to be positive to enjoy your activities.
In spite of following above given tips, if you still fail to manage your class, don’t feel hesitation to ask for help. Experienced teachers would definitely have more tips and tricks to manage a class.