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Childrens behaviour at certain times of the day.

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by Nachil01, Dec 19, 2017.

  1. Nachil01

    Nachil01 New commenter

    This is my first post on here and I'm hoping some experienced EYFS teachers can share some wisdom or ideas to help me with my Reception class this year. I am still fairly new to teaching having completed my NQT year only a few years ago. My class this year have a lot of complex needs but in terms of behaviour for learning I haven't really had a problem in general in terms of lessons like phonics, maths or topic. They are all engaged during activities and most show good attention during carpet time because they enjoy the activities and I have used a lot of positive praise to excite their interest in learning. However I am finding specific areas of the day (perhaps less related to academic learning) incredibly challenging with this particular class that I have not encountered previously. For example during Tidy up time, I always have a large group of children who will be fully engaged in an activity but as soon as I stop the class and tell them it is time to tidy up, decide to jump on eachother in the middle of the classroom. I have used lots of positive praise, singing songs to promote tidying and praise those who are helping, had circle times about the importance of tidying up and I have even given these children jobs during this time to keep them busy. But the second my back is turned or I am talking to another child they have abandoned their task and are on top of eachother again. I am fed up and frankly exhausted spending these moments with my eyes on them constantly to make sure they are on task.
    The second part of the day I am finding challenging is during the end of the day when my TA goes on a 15min break and the children are given fruit and sat down to watch a video on the interactive whiteboard while I read with a small group of them. It is almost like because I am at the back of the class they think I cant see them. Whilst I am at the front the behaviour is not a problem because I can nip any low level disruption in the bud before it escalates. But when I am reading with a group and they cant see me directly some of them start to wrestle and jump on eachother. I really struggle having a solid 15mins with my group without being interrupted by silly and unsafe behaviour from the rest of the class. Again I am exhausted reminding them on a daily basis that I am still there and the expectations for behaviour. I have had the same structure in previous years and this 15min reading time has never been a problem.

    In addition I have been told that during my PPA, and on occasions my class has been covered by another adult, the wrestling and jumping on eachother behaviour happens more often and other teachers do not know how to manage it. They remind the children about expectations and they stop, but 10 seconds later they do the same thing. Cover teachers have asked for my advice but I am not sure how to get the children to understand they need to respect other adults when I am not there.
    Does anyone have any ideas to keep the children on task in these moments, and to instil an understanding of why they shouldnt jump/ wrestle in the classroom at any time.

    I should add that my TA has taken a 6 week leave of absence and I have had a revolving door of supply TAs since October. The inconsistency of additional adults in the classroom has absolutely contributed to the decline in behaviour when I am not there but I am unsure how to tackle this.

    Like I have said, phonics lessons and maths lessons are great. It just seems to be when there isn't an activity to engage them. Of course we still need moments like tidy up time, guided reading and fruit time during the day so I am at a loss and would appreciate any advice from you lovely and more experienced lot.

    Thank you for any helpful response and I apologise that I went on a little rant there.
  2. zippygeorgeandben

    zippygeorgeandben Occasional commenter

    Hi Nachil01,
    First of all, welcome to you and congrats on your first post. Ok in no particular order (because I'm not really someone who offers advice on here so take what little you want from what I have to say!), do you have a colour group/reward system in place in class? If so, does this work? Have you used it with your particular issue?
    This wrestling/jumping you really need to nip in the bud. On the first day back, as soon as you are sat on the carpet I'd make clear this expectation that when you ring the bell (or whatever it is you do) they are to stop what they are doing (do you have a 'to finish' tray so those who are deeply involved can put it in here without wondering what to do with their unfinished masterpiece?) and then start to tidy up. Do you use a timer? online-stopwatch isn't bad and you could set it for ten minutes and get them in a race against time. With my class I don't play tidy up songs, personal decision for me. I just find the noise level goes up.
    BUT, that first day back explain to the whole class that it is lovely to see them, go through your usual rules/routines (hands up to speak, crossed legs etc.) but stress how disappointed you are at tidy up time and then do a mock run. Get the children to stand in different areas pretending they are playing, ring your bell and see if they can stop and then sensibly come to the carpet. Keep practicing. Have a scapegoat too. If someone starts wrestling, absolutely come down on them in front of everyone and issue a consequence
    The next day, remind ALL the children about tidying up, also the children who let the whole class down. Keep reminding them all the time. If you do have colour groups you could get them to tidy certain areas of the classroom, that way they won't be with 'friends' perhaps messing about. Also, I'd have a no going to the toilet rule during this time.
    Regarding the reading, have you explained to the children that it's really unfair on the children you are reading with that they cannot sit quietly for 15 minutes so you can help children learn to read. Express your disappointment in them. Get children to dob others in.
    Why does your TA go for a break at the end of the day?
    I'm concerned by 'guided reading' though but that wasn't why you posted was it!
  3. Sir Cumference

    Sir Cumference Occasional commenter

    Tidy up time, time for lunch, reading, number, art and other regular activities involving transition can be difficult. Singing simple songs designed for such times can help bring framework and an understood consistency. 'Snippety Songs' can help - here it is:http://www.onemoretime.biz/snippety-songs.htm
  4. ViolaClef

    ViolaClef Lead commenter

    Every class is different and brings different challenges with it. What might work well with one class one year may not for the class the following year.
    It sounds as if the reading time isn’t working well. I would have reservations about trying to read with a small group at the end of the day when a video is on in the same room - they must be quite tired and the sound of the video must be distracting. I would find another, better time to do the reading and would focus attention on the children having their snack. Will they eat nicely and talk to each other without a video on if you are sitting at the front? Or will they behave and eat their snack if you read a story to them?
    calamansi likes this.
  5. JosieWhitehead

    JosieWhitehead Star commenter

    Oh, I'd love you to go to my main poetry website (Google JOSIE'S POEMS) - and to poems for younger children. Some of my poems have been put to music and they can sing along with them accompanied by Martin and his guitar. Another thing to hold their attention is what I do when I make school visits: I tell them to listen carefully whilst I read a short poem and I tell them that I will then read it again and stop at the rhyming word to see who can remember it. This works a treat, particularly if I see someone fidgeting because I often ask the fidget for the word. None of them like to show that they don't know it. They are only short poems. Something they'll love is that most of the nursery rhymes they know, I have written as alternative nursery rhymes that are funny. Oh, you'll find them and see. Please do enjoy all the years of work I've done for you all. I was a teacher for more than 30 years.
  6. lizdot

    lizdot New commenter

    Hello Nachil01
    Zippygeorgeandben's advice sounds good to me. I write down a list of 'top tidiers' on my whiteboard at tidy up time, this works well for most children. Good Luck in the new term
  7. calamansi

    calamansi Lead commenter

    Re tidy- up time, I put this on the "top tips" thread but it might be worth repeating here. Sit in a chair with the bin at your feet. Tell the children that they have to bring at least three bits of rubbish to be counted and binned. Those that comply can do whatwver reward you deem fit.

    I wouldn't have a reading group and a video at the end of the day.
    Make Story Time and a song something special for the whole class.

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