Sunday, August 8, 2021

 Part Eight of a Series Just for New Teachers

 Some Suggestions for Successful Interventions

One of the most difficult skills to develop as a new teacher is learning to intervene successfully when a student misbehaves. It is very easy to overreact or to react in anger and frustration or to just react without thinking through the end result of what your intervention could cause. The art of intervening effectively when there is a behavior incident takes time and practice and planning. Here are a few suggestions for how to think about making the kind of interventions that will make your classroom a peaceful and productive place for your students and for yourself. 

When a student misbehaves, it helps to think about the choices that you have when you intervene. There are really only two choices that you have once you decide not to ignore the problem and to take action. 

Although you have two choices, it is important to be clear about when you want to act. Here are some easy guidelines to help you think through what to do. 

Here are some of the easiest mistakes to make (and to avoid) when you are enforcing consequences. The one that teachers have reported to me that they find the hardest to avoid is to waiting for a response. Issuing a directive and then waiting impatiently for a student to comply is not helpful. Instead, calmly state the consequence and then turn away--giving the student a moment or two to process the consequence, overcome reluctance, and then comply. 

One of the most effective tools that teachers have in enforcing consequences to to issue a warning. While warnings can be effective, they lose their power if they are overused. 

Finally, one of the most frequently asked questions that teachers asked me in seminars was what to do when students don't seem to care about the consequences that they were given. Here are some questions to ask yourself if this happens in your classroom. 

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