Stress Management for Living, Teaching, & Parenting

How can procedures be used when students misbehave?

QUESTION:

I’m trying to get a handle on this whole concept of guided choices and procedures.  I guess I don’t really understand what a procedure is or how you would use a procedure when a student is misbehaving.  Can you give me an example?

DR. MARSHALL’S RESPONSE:

Teaching procedures is teaching expectations.

Here is an example:

Rather than punishing students for walking down the hallway and talking without permission (against directions), students can be asked for suggestions.  The question can be put to them, “What can you do if you have the urge to talk?”

A student might volunteer, “Tell yourself not to talk.”  The teacher can respond that this is a good plan but will not produce success unless a procedure is attached to it.

Students can suggest some.  Two possibilities might be:

  • Keep your lips together as you are walking.
  • Press your tongue to the top of your mouth so you can’t talk.

The teacher would then suggest practicing, “Show me what this would look like.”

The teacher can also pursue the topic of talking a bit further by asking, “What if the person beside you talks to you.  What can you do?”

Again more procedures would be developed such as “Put your finger to your mouth.” The teacher could explain how doing this–taking the initiative to remind a fellow student of expected behavior–is at Level D, taking initiative.

Again the teacher would have students practice and reinforce the procedure:

“Show me what it would look like if your walking pal started to talk to you.  What would you do?”

Dr. Marvin Marshall
P.O. Box 2227
Los Alamitos, CA 90720
Phone: 714.220.1882
marv@marvinmarshall.com
Piper Press
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