Volume 8 Number 1
IN THIS ISSUE:
2. Promoting Responsibility
3. Increasing Effectiveness
4. Improving Relationships
5. Promoting Learning
6. Discipline without Stress
7. Testimonials and Research
MONTHLY RESPONSIBILITY AND LEARNING QUOTE:
Likeability is the shortest path to believability and trust.
In this, the U.S.A.’s presidential year, it may be
worthwhile to reflect on the one quality above others that
prompts people to vote for a particular candidate. That
The reason, as mentioned above, is that likeability is the
shortest path to believability and trust.
Three practices are most effective for being likeable. They
are (1) communicating in POSITIVE, rather than in negative,
terms; (2) showing OPTIONS that are available; and (3)
REFLECTING on how to overcome objections.
The “Teachers Gazette” is back!
This is the first month since August 2003 that the gazette
is again being published.
As with former issues, I will be a regular contributor. My
current article on promoting learning is entitled,
“UNDERSTANDING BOYS.” You can read it and other articles at
Scroll down the site and subscribe for free delivery
directly to your e-mail box.”
The support link on the left menu bar at MarvinMarshall.com
has been updated. Teachers and parents who are using
Discipline without Stress will find additional assistance at
My blog (web log), “DISCIPLINE FOR SMART PEOPLE,” contains
regular short posts about Discipline without Stress,
improving relationships, increasing effectiveness, promoting
learning, and promoting responsibility.
The mindset of current educational approaches regarding
student behavior focuses unfortunately on obedience, the
source too often of reluctance, resistance, resentment, and
even rebellion. Simply stated, OBEDIENCE DOES NOT CREATE
DESIRE. However, when the focus is on promoting
responsibility, obedience follows as a natural by-product.
The reason is that motivation to be responsible requires a
DESIRE to do so. The motivation must be INTERNAL.
Many schools use EXTERNAL motivation in the form of rewards,
threats, and punishments. However, these approaches (a)
foster compliance rather than commitment, (b) require an
adult presence for monitoring, (c) set up students to be
dependent upon external agents, and (d) do not foster
long-term motivation for responsibility. In addition, when
students start collecting rewards–as in Positive Behavior
Support approaches–they start competing to see who can
receive the most number of rewards. Since rewards change
motivation, one will never know whether people are acting
responsibly to get the reward or whether their motivation is
to do right because doing right is the right thing to do.
My continuing efforts are devoted to changing the
educational mindset away from using external and
manipulative approaches. A less stressful and more effective
approach is to motivate young people so that they WANT to
behave responsibly and WANT to put forth effort to learn.
With this in mind, I am starting 2008 by creating a
NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION, “DISCIPLINE WITHOUT STRESS.”
The organization’s mission is to promote responsible
behavior and reduce apathy toward learning, especially in
low socio-economic poorly performing schools. This will be
accomplished by donating books and staff development to
qualifying schools that are interested in THE DISCIPLINE
WITHOUT STRESS TEACHING MODEL.
(NOTE: This is the new name for what was previously referred
to as the “Marvin Marshall Teaching Model.”)
If you know of any grant writer who may be interested in
assisting the DISCIPLINE WITHOUT STRESS nonprofit
organization, please urge the person to contact
me at mailto:Marv@MarvinMarshall.com.
Thank you for your efforts on behalf of improving education
and increasing responsible behavior.
2. PROMOTING RESPONSIBILITY
Kerry’s school starts each day with public address
Four days a week the morning announcements END WITH A
QUESTION designed to prompt reflection and responsibility in
students. Kerry finds that posing a daily question directs
the attention of everyone in the school (both students and
teachers) to a specific issue or topic. Throughout the year,
the school reinforces school-wide procedures, solves small
problems, and encourage internal motivation through the
This is now the fifth year of using announcement questions,
and the school sees a lot of good coming from them. Although
the specific questions are tailored to Kerry’s own school
community, it is the hope that by sharing the announcements
other schools will be influenced to consider developing a
similar program. Her school finds that these questions
provide a powerful way to influence students.
Kerry’s blog with the daily announcement questions for
2007-2008 is updated weekly. Here is the link:
3. INCREASING EFFECTIVENESS
Forcing an issue often spoils the desired outcome.
The old story of the salesman who lost a sale bears periodic
repeating. After he told his sales manager, “Well, I guess
you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him
drink,” his boss replied, “Your job is not to make the horse
drink; it’s to make him thirsty.”
The Art of Influence is to INDUCE THE PERSON TO INFLUENCE
Posing a provocative question that prompts the other person
to reflect is the most successful approach for increasing
your effectiveness–and theirs.
4. IMPROVING RELATIONSHIPS
Last month, my wife and I
were fortunate enough to celebrate
the 50th anniversary of our wedding.
When asked our secret, I replied, “by sharing the Golden
Rule of marriage: BE KIND TO ONE ANOTHER.”
In all of our years together, I never recall experiencing
the quickest way to destroy any relationship: register
5. PROMOTING LEARNING
I received the following communication:
Dear, Dr. Marshall,
I am a Special Education teacher at a high school with the
Pittsburgh Public School District. I’m currently enrolled
in Gannon University of Erie, Pennsylvania in a graduate
program of curriculum & instruction.
During the course of “Discipline and Classroom Management,”
I viewed a small portion of your video. In addition, I’ve
read a little of your literature regarding “The Raise
Responsibility System” and I think it is fantastic.
I intend to study your approach to fostering intrinsic
motivation and responsibility for my students. Do you
provide an individual package for teachers as opposed to
your package for an entire school’s staff, or can you direct
me as to what are the essential components of your model
necessary for implementation in my classroom?
Thank you in advance for your time and consideration,
The In-House Staff Development
was created for schools to conduct their own staff
development (and for me to reduce my travelling). For you,
as an individual special education teacher, I suggest
focusing on the following sites:
Print this and keep it handy. Learn all of its parts. The
next site will help you with this.
Create visions and pictures of what you want your students
to do–instead of what you do not want them to do.
Create or purchase the two posters–one with the levels of
the hierarchy and the other with the impulse management
displayed. Post them. Practice some procedure for
redirecting distracting thoughts.
Study this link carefully. Focus on the differences between
levels C and D–not between the acceptable and unacceptable
After you have downloaded these links, plan on spending 5-10
minutes a day in front of a mirror or with another person
verbalizing out loud the important points from each of the
four links above. Do this at least four (4) times to be
comfortable, really understand, and easily verbalize the
May this year of 2008 be very successful for you and for the
good you will be doing with and for your students!
6. Discipline without Stress
The following is from http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DisciplineWithoutStress/
I am new to the group and am teaching at an urban middle
(6-8) charter school in Indianapolis. It is the first year,
and the school has expelled a number of kids. I am on a
temporary assignment (3 weeks). My teacher friend has
adapted the, “They are not serious about their education”
approach and has a dumbed down curriculum.
I had success in simply using the hierarchy when I was
struggling with teaching middle school. So I taught the
hierarchy. In order to bring the class to order, I used a
whole class approach of stating the number of students not
at levels C or D and then stating the behaviors being
displayed as being either A or B behaviors.
This immediately stopped the need for calling out individual
names and the inevitable confrontations.
I learned about your newsletter from the workshops you’ve
conducted at Brookhaven Middle School.
I just wanted to let you know that last year when I first
heard you, I didn’t really buy into much that you said at
all. This year, however, for some strange reason, it seemed
to be an extremely logical way of conducting class. I’m
using your ideas with tremendous success this year. This is
my 10th year at BMS and my discipline referrals are lower