Classroom Management Strategies

Classroom Management
All of the things that a teacher does to organize students, space, time and materials so that instruction in content and student learning can take place.
Behavior Management Interventions
All those actions (and conscious inactions) teachers and parents engage in to enhance the probability that children, individually and in groups, will develop effective behaviors that are personally fulfilling, productive, and socially acceptable.
Order among pupils so learning can take place without competition from unproductive factors–a system of rules for conduct and a mechanism for ensuring that conduct codes are followed.
The rules that guide moral (right, good, or correct) behavior.
Attaining control over one’s personal behavior; the ultimate goal of all behavior management.
The ultimate goal of all behavior management:
Ethical dilemna:
A situation presenting two or more equal alternatives
Principle of Normalization:
The principle that supports classroom interventions that let the person with a disability obtain an existence as close to the “norm” as possible.
Principle of Fairness
Fairness under the law, emphasizing that being fair means giving the child what he or she needs to be successful. (Fair does NOT mean equal.)
Principle of Respect:
This principle refers to the rights of all individuals to be treated as individual human beings.
A hypothesis assumed for the sake of argument or investigation; an unproved assumption.
Once proved, a theory will become:
A law.
Caveat emptor
Buyer beware
Keystone Behaviors
Behaviors that have the potential to have the greatest positive effect on a child’s behavior.
The action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another
Self-fulfilling Prophecy
To a significant extent, the expectations of the teacher (or parent) will be reflected in the behavior of the child.
So, if we believe a child is and will continue to be incompetent, the probability is increased that the child will function as an incompetent.
Target Behavior
The specific behavior to be observed, measured, assessed, or modified–the specific behavior to be changed as a result of intervention.
Operant Conditioning
Focus on the relationship between overt events in the environment and changes in specific target behaviors.
A behavior or response that is controlled or at least influenced by events within the environment.
Events in the environment that precede a target behavior or operant.
Events in the environment that occur AFTER a target behavior or operant: “The consequences of behavior, then, are the determinants of behavior. Human beings tend to repeat behaviors that are, in their perception, rewarded or praised. They tend not to repeat behaviors that are, in their perception, punished.”
A consequence of a behavior that strengthens or increases the behavior–it can be either positive (something is positive is given) or negative (something negative is taken away)
Positive reinforcement
The presentation of a desirable reinforcer after a behavior has been exhibited which results in an increase in the behavior and increases the probability that the behavior will recur
Premack Principle:
Using a high frequency behavior to reinforce a low frequency behavior, “If you do X, then you can do or get Y.”
(Example: “If you eat your vegetables, then you can have dessert.”
Primary Reinforcer
A tangible reward such as food, money, tokens, stickers, etc.
**They have innate value–value in themselves
Secondary Reinforcer
A social reinforcer such as a smile, praise, pat on the back, etc.
They gain value by being paired with primary reinforcers
A state that occurs when a reinforcer is used so often it loses its effect
The systematic, immediate reinforcement of successive approximations of a target behavior until the behavior is established.
Negative Reinforcement
The removal of an ongoing aversive stimulus after a behavior has been exhibited which results in an increase in the behavior
The removal of a reinforcer that is sustaining or increasing a behavior; it can be intentional or unintentional (when intentional = planned ignoring)
The addition of a negative stimulus or the removal of a positive stimulus after a behavior has been exhibited which results in a decrease in the behavior
Undesirable or unpleasant results of behavior the individual would normally wish to avoid
The process in which a behavior reinforced in the presence of one stimulus is exhibited in the presence of another stimulus
**AKA Transfer of learning (applying what you’ve learned in another situation)
Learning to act one way in one situation and another way in a different situation–the result of differential reinforcement
The observation and learning of new behaviors from others–the provision of an individual or group behavior to be imitated or not imitated by the individual.
A method used to describe learning by observation and imitation that is reinforced.
Applied Behavior Analysis
The direct application of Behavior Change Principles in non-laboratory, everyday situations and settings
Functional Behavioral Assessments
A process used to identify what are the most helpful potential behavioral interventions
Positive Behavioral Supports
Proactive supports provided on a school-wide, class-wide, and individual basis to help students make the most appropriate behavioral, educational, and social choices
Guides to moral behavior
The belief that the individual’s right trumps the right’s of society
The belief that the interests of the society trump the rights of the individual
Principle of Normalization
The idea that any behavior plan should move children towards a more normal life/as close to “normal” as possible.
Within reason, children should use social problem solving and do anything they can do independently entirely for themselves.
“Do no harm.” – Give kids choices. Teach them to problem solve themself. Have high expectations.
Principle of Fairness
Not everyone should get the same thing, but everyone should get what they need.
*Have high expectations for every child.
Sin of Omission
Not doing something you should have done.
Principle of Respect
Use punishment as a last resort.
Never use psychological punishment (sarcasm/embarassement/etc)
Have zero tolerance for bullying –> Create a sense of safety in the classroom. School is a SAFE place.
*Consider the universality of the Golden Rule.
If the learner’s behavior interferes with his/her learning or the learning of others, then the IEP team must…
…consider the interventions needed to address the behavior, including positive behavioral interventions and supports. Educators must accept the responsibility to teach students appropriate behaviors.
The way you think about things (because of past experiences–cultural influences, friends, family, education, faith, etc.)
Developmental/Constructivist Theory
A child’s behavior is driven by his/her basic instincts & maturation through the developmental stages
-Piaget, Vygotsky, Kohlberg, Sigmund Freud
Biobehavioral Theory
Behavior comes from physical or neurological conditions (why behavior is affected by nutrition/diet)
Ecological (Environmental) Theory
Students’ behavior is regulated by external social factors and the specific setting or social environment.
*Focus on the whole group & beware of your expectations/self-fulfilling prophecies
Behavioral Theory
Students’ behavior is largely determined by antecedents and consequences.
*The focus is on what CAUSES the behavior. Not the behavior itself.
Personal Traits of a teacher
Dedication, empathy, fairness, self insight & self appraisal, patience, confidence, a good sense of humor – minus sarcasm!
A teacher is both…
A model and a leader.
Knowledge & Skills of a teacher
-Able to…
-Organize the classroom
-Motivate students
-Provide superior instruction
-Establish routines
-Communicate well
-Work independently & as a team
-Provide a safe & secure classroom
Continuous Schedule of Reinforcement
Every single time a behavior occurs, reinforcement is given (light turns on every time the switch is turned)
Fixed Ratio
S of R based on the number of behaviors (for example, giving a reinforcement every 3rd time a behavior occurs–Skinner’s rat getting a pellet every so often)
Variable Ratio
S of R based randomly on the number of behaviors (lottery/slot machine)
Fixed Interval
S of R where reinforcement is given at a set interval of time (every 30 minutes–example: pay every 2 weeks)
Variable Interval
S of R where reinforcement is given at random periods of time (ex: fishing)
When establishing a new behavior you must begin with…
A continuous schedule of reinforcement, then move to a variable ratio.
Reinforcement is dependent on the…
…exhibition of the target behavior.
The target behavior is to be reinforced…
…IMMEDIATELY after it is exhibited.
During the initial stages of the behavior change process, the target behavior should be…
…reinforced EACH time it is exhibited.
When the target behavior reaches a satisfactory level, it is…
…reinforced using a VARIABLE schedule.
If primary (tangible) reinforcers are used…
…secondary reinforcers should always be used with them.
Five Steps in the Behavior Change Process
1. Identify the target behavior.
2. Describe/define the target behavior in observable and measurable terms.
3. Collect & chart baseline data.
4. Design & implement the behavior change program.
5. Collect & evaluate the results.
Identify the target behavior:
What is the TYPE,
& INTENSITY of the behavior to be changed?
Describe/define the target behavior:
-The behavior must be observable & measurable
-The objective must:
1. Describe what the child will do
2. Include a level of mastery
3. Describe the environment & circumstances
Collecting & Recording Baseline Data
AKA Applied Behavioral Analysis
Baseline Data
Quantitative data collected BEFORE the behavior change intervention has been implemented,
Includes counting behavior & charting/graphing behavior, and
Is collected by DIRECT OBSERVATIONS of the child
Ordinate points when graphing
Located on the vertical axis and represent the behavior’s frequency, duration or percent of occurrence
Abscissa points when graphing
Located on the horizontal axis and represent the hours, days, or sessions observed.
Observer Reliability
Having more than one person observing the same sequence of events to compare/back-up results
Reinforcers are only good if…
…they INCREASE the desired behavior
(also keep in mind that a specific reinforcer may not be desirable to all students and that overexposure will cause an initially powerful reinforcer to lose its strength –> choosing and implementing reinforcers is a CONTINUOUS process)
Anecdotal Records
Little notes on student behavior – open-ended & brief, used by teachers
(what/who/where/when… but NOT why)
Running Records
Writing EVERYthing about behavior – general, open-ended, sequential (not done by teachers)
Specimen Records
Recording information about specific behaviors
-Similar to running records, but more of a detailed narrative account
(Must be done by someone other than the teacher)
Objective narrative accounts…
1. Record only the facts
2. Record sufficient detail
3. Do not interpret
4. Use words that describe what was actually seen, not words that judge/interpret
5. Record facts in the order that they happened
Narrative accounts of data cannot be used for baseline data, but these can be:
1. Event recording
2. Duration recording
3. Time point sampling
4. Interval recording
5. Latency recording
Event Recording
How many times is a behavior exhibited during a specific time period?
Duration Recording
How long does the behavior last?
(especially tantrums)
Time Point Sampling
Does the behavior occur at a certain point in time?
Interval Recording
Does the behavior occur during a specific time period?
Latency Recording
How long after x does a behavior occurs?
(Ex: how much time has passed after a question is asked before the student raises his hand to answer?)
Explicit Reprimands
Scolding/verbal chastizing – a mild punishment that should only be used in case of emergency
Performance Feedback
Similar to correcting errors – show students how they’re doing (if you’re tracking their performance then SHOW THEM)
Response Cost
A type of punishment where a privilege is lost
(Loss of Privileges)
-Make sure to explain why something is being taken away & what an appropriate behavior would be
Time Out (from reinforcement)
Taking away the opportunity to receive positive reinforcement
1. Observational Time Out – (there, but cannot participate in the activity)
2. Exclusion (within the class – back corner)
3. Seclusion Time Out (removed from the class)
Systematically reducing a fear or phobic reaction to something in the classroom (like test taking or public speaking)
Differential Reinforcement
-Pros & Cons-
A set of positive reductive procedures that combine extinction with positive reinforcement (eliminate a negative behavior to replace it with a positive one)

Pros: Flexible, positive, avoids punishment & the negative results of punishment, fairly easy, usually free
Cons: Can require baseline data

DRO (Differtial Reinforcement of Zero Rates of Beahavior)
If a student doesn’t x for a specific amount of time, they are rewarded (given y reinforcement for ZERO occurrences of a non-desirable target behavior)
DRI (Differential Reinforcement of Incompatible Behaviors)
Ignoring a negative behavior and reinforcing the coinciding positive behavior (ignoring a child who is tardy & praising them for being on time; ignoring a student who is off task or out of his/her seat and reinforcing them for staying on task and sitting in his/her seat)
DRL (Differential Reinforcement of Lower Rates of Behavior)
Similar to DRO, but only requires fewer incidences of the undesirable behavior, not zero occurrences
Any form of assistance during the behavior change process–can be verbal, gestural, environmental or physical prompts.
Any teacher behavior that causes students to know how to do the behavior correctly.
Token Economy
Using a VALUELESS token that can be earned through positive behavior and later exchanged for something that IS valuable.
A form of positive reinforcement in which a token can be exchanged for a variety of reinforcers.
Shaping/Graduated Guidance
The systematic reinforcement of successive approximations of the target behavior until the behavior is established.
Involves chaining which can be forward or backward.
Contingency Contracting
The process of using a contract so that the student gets to do something he or she wants to do following the completion of something the parent or teacher wants the child to do.
An agreement, written or verbal, between two or more parties, individuals or groups that stipulates the responsibilities of the parties concerning a specific item or activity.
Contracting is based on the…
Premack Principle which used a preferred behavior to reinforce a non-preferred behavior.
Self Management
The process of structuring one’s own behavior through observational learning, self-instruction, and self-monitory.
An intervention strategy implemented to instruct learners in self-control.
Punishment is the ____________ behavior management technique, yet it is also the ______________.
Most frequently used; most ineffective.
Potential Negative Side Effects of Punishment:
Ineffective long-term; only suppresses behavior rather than eliminating them.
Does not teach or model appropriate behaviors.
Must be used on a continuous schedule to be effective at all.
Does not help teach internal control of behavior.
Leads to a negative attitude toward school, the teacher or the punisher.
Corporal Punishment
Sends the message that violence is acceptable (thus encouraging the child to resort to violence against others)
Erodes the child’s sense of trust, leading to fear, tension, stress, and withdrawal.
Can inhibit learning, lead to anger and resentment (toward teacher, punisher or others)
Produces shame, may be physically harmful, and potentially psychologically harmful or lead to abuse
Guidelines for the Use of Punishment
Use only as last resort or when a behavior must be stopped immediately
Consider/use all POSITIVE alternatives first, then, if necessary use the mildest form of punishment
Use with positive reinforcement to teach appropriate behavior
Despite usually being ineffective, punishment is still used because…
It is quick and easy,
a stress relief for the punisher,
a “natural” reaction (its what we know/have learned),
habitual, and
It intimidates other children, thus helping to prevent their misbehavior.
The punisher may be uneducated.