Sunday, 11 September 2011

Behaviour mangement in children a short guide.

Why do children misbehave at home or at school?


  • Because they are bored- reported in TES that a third of schools bore their pupils. I suspect the same can be said of us parents !.

  • Poorly explained and maintained boundaries.

  • Lack of respect.

  • Inappropriate teaching/learning or parenting style.

  • Problems at home.

How do we change?

  • Make the curriculum at school and activities at home  more interesting.

  • Remember that boys in particular learn better when they are doing something that is more physically involved.

  • Boys need competition to thrive.

  • And for those of us that teach - it is an idea to have a no hands up policy, this prevents the same children answering all the time and encourages others to be involved.

  • Meet and greet children as they arrive in the class-set the scene as the day starts- look for signs of unhappiness and try to sort before the lessons start. This can be the same if you are a parent and about to either go shopping or perhaps attend a big event like a wedding.


  • As it often case of school every lesson is treated as a clean sheet. At home you can move onto a new activity and treat this as your clean sheet.

  • Break your lesson /parenting day into small chunks- quiet and still/ physical - ie use hand clap game to brain storm ideas/ share knowledge in pairs. And if you are a parent at home perhaps a game of i-spy?.

  • Agree firm fair boundaries and be consistent.

  • Respect is a two way street.

  • Maintain a child's self esteem .

  • An activity that is fun will get done

When things go wrong 







  • Deescalate the situation.


  •  Gentle reminders- praise then a quiet reminder.

  • Use child's name, maintain eye contact, say thank you but not please as this suggests you are asking them or pleading.

  • Be aware of everything that is happening.


  • Ask child- What should you be doing?Do not tell. A child's attention is maintained and they are taking ownership of the situation and their behaviour ( it is helping develop self awareness)

  • Do not disagree with child- this causes an argument and leads to confrontation.

  • Humour can sometimes deescalate a situation.

  • Give child choices- right choice = praise, wrong choice = consequence.





Personal development

  • Always seek help and advice - it is OK to say you need suggestions / help.

  • Be critical of your own performance and teaching of your lesson if you are a teacher. If you are a parent it is pretty much the same really!.

  • Observe other parents and observe your child's teacher if you help in their, class or another class or year group.

  • Share knowledge and experience.

  • Look for solutions to problems.

  • Children can see if you lack confidence- appear confident and remember body language.
I don't have all the answers to behaviour management in children these are just a few useful tips. Your parenting style is up to you and no one can  tell you how to bring up your own child. Do what is right for your child at each stage in their life and take it easy and don't stress over things. Parenting is for life . It is a honour to be a parent and should not be seen as a chore.













1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting this Clare. I found it interesting. I think we should take the '1/3 of kids are bored' report from TES with a pinch of salt however. I wonder who has defined them as being bored? Was it an external monitor or just the children's perceptions? Some children are so disengaged, often due to external forces, they won't be interested in the most animated and well planned lesson the teacher can deliver, regardless whether it suits their 'learning style' or not (and it is now being debated whether we should go down that route anyway). We try to make learning as fun as possible and we have a huge outdoor programme, visits to places and interesting speakers in school. The children can see up-coming events on a large school timetable so they have things to look forward to. On the other hand, we have the 'hufftes" - you 'have to' do this and you have to do that because you need these skills to survive in the world and make your place in society. When children have a balance, they accept there will be some things they don't enjoy as much as others.
    I'm glad you brought up the 'no hands up' rule. We follow this too and everyone is expected to contribute and their views valued. Sometimes in group or class discussions, we give children 3 tokens, and they spend a token when they contribute. Once they have spent them, they can't add any more which helps chatterers to keep their turn for important contributions and it allows quieter members to know they will get their turn and they don't have to fight to have their say.
    Children need consistency with rules in school and at home. I would add to your useful home tips to say yes as often as you can, but when you say NO..... MEAN IT! Children will kick the fence posts to check the boundaries are still there and it's no good saying no, no, no , no ... oh well just this time! There go the boundaries. You see it in supermarket queues all the time. It's hard, but best to g et these things in place when they are little. Once a friend call me up because our daughters had dreamed up a plan which was a no-goer and she asked me to say no because she wasn't good at it! (she was a doctor!)
    You have given some excellent tips and I'm sure it will give parents' something to think about. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete

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