1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Lesson input is being ruined by two children!

Discussion in 'Behaviour' started by druabyrne, Oct 14, 2011.

  1. Just wondering if anyone can give me some advice. Im an NQT in a mixed lower/middle class area with a Year 5 class. Most of the children are fine, typical 10/11 year olds. But I am having serious issues with three children in my class. Two girls constantly talk and shout out, walk around the class and ignore me or laugh in my face when I ask them to do something. If I punish them for it, it turns to moans of "you're always picking on me, you done punish x or y when they do something". Now these girls know what they are doing is wrong, we have had many one to one chats for them to explain that to me, but the still chose to do the wrong thing because they want to be the class clown etc. Its gotton to the point where my lessons are basically ruined because these two girls constantly talk and shout out and distract others while Im talking, then children cannot do the work properly because I havnt got a chance to teach the way I want to. I have had these girls removed from class but the head does not want them removed any more because to the children it looks like I cant fight my own battles and Im just palming them off. But by removing them, I can teach a lot more freely. Has anyone any ideas that could help? We have had a full day of circle time to try and get the children to understand the consequences of this behaviour but they still refuse to listen to all advice and help given. I've talked to parents, one is being very helpful and supportive, the other isn't be so helpful. Punishments don't seem to work any more, they dont care about detention and they go to the refrain of ' you hate me, you're picking on me' even though I've clearly explained that their behaviour is the reason they are being punished. Any ideas anyone? I'd be deeply grateful! Thanks.
  2. joedoggyuk

    joedoggyuk New commenter

    Stop feeding these attention seeking freaks with discussions on their behaviour and just punish them. I've made this mistake too often: discussing the reasons for poor behaviour, and what they should do next time; but it only leads to them justifying their actions, leaving them feeling righteous. It also leaves you looking weak.
    If it's a nice kid that, for some unknown reason, has misbehaved then, by all means, talk to them about why. But, if they're repeat offenders, the only thing you need to repeat is the punishment.
    Don't enter into any kind of debate with them-- you did A, B is the consequence. Then you need to blank them. If they try to debate, inform them you have work to do and they should sit there in silence, if they continue to waste your time, they will suffer additional consequence.
    Finally, it's not the severity of the consequence that matters, it's certainty of the consequence. Hand out small consequences to begin with, but make sure you know--and they know-- your arsenal extends much further.
  3. 2 things:
    1 if you have a TA have them take the girls outside during imput and introduce the topic/lesson to the girls separately outside while you get the rest going. No audience will soon stop that!
    2- I 100% agree with above. Do not discuss things with repeat offenders. If you do x you get . You choose to do x so y is your consequence. End of. I am NOT discussing this right now. If you want to discuss it further you can do so during your time at break/lunch. I doubt they will give up their time...no child of mine ever has.
  4. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

    If you had just put "attention seekers" then your comments would be great.
  5. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    It's a pity that this perception is allowed to fester. Involving others - colleagues, HOD, DHTs, etc. - is not a sign of weakness but of strength. It's those teachers who close their door and "deal with it themselves" who the children know are really the ones they can get away with murder with.
    These girls should be out of the class as soon as they hit that stage on your discipline hierarchy - if you don't have an explicit one, make that your homework tonight! - and if that means they are at the HOD's door within five minutes of "that's a warning" / "that's a final warning" / "you need to leave my room now", then that's their choice. An explicit herarchy will take the personalisation out of it, because you can then simply point out the escalation they have chosen to initiate.
    They need to learn that they WILL be sanctioned each and every time they disrupt your lesson, and the HOD should support you in that. The more support you get, the sooner these girls will realise that you have a zero tolerance for their behaviour.
  6. Kelloggs

    Kelloggs New commenter

    Except in my school where it is seen as a failure on part of the teacher for not being able to get them in line!
  7. joedoggyuk

    joedoggyuk New commenter

    It's so altruistic of you to help out a fellow teacher by directing them towards a fount of knowledge. Especially as it's your first post. So. Kind.

    But, come on, don't forget to add the trademark characters. It should be "The Daily 5 TM".

    In hindsight, I should have mentioned BrainGym (c), Learning styles , and --hard pressed to share my altruistic love for all-- joedoggylove TM in helping out my comrades.

    I'm not entirely sure as to what joedoggylove TM entails yet, but I'm seeing a lot of independent learning where those kids really really take ownership over their own learning, and education really takes outside the box in a vista of creative love. Send me a tenner and I'll share my secret.
  8. JOS9511

    JOS9511 New commenter

    I have read most of the comments in reply to your post. It's a lot of good points and a few that may be viewed as rather standard response to a colleague who is at the end of his/her wits. To me the problem seems to be lack of support from line managers. When you say the head does not want the pupils removed from lessons no matter how disruptive and uncooperative they are,) it suggests lack of empathy for your situation and a careless attitude about the learning of the rest of the pupils in your class. It's clear from your comments that you are really concerned about the rest of your pupils' learning and how the troublesome few are getting away with lesson disruption. It's a typical example of how kids can be allowed to impose their will over a teacher. Failure of the school behaviour managers to support you will have the results that the kids will be emboldened in their poor behaviour. Even some of the good ones may begin to misbehave out of frustration and because they see others getting away with it. It sounds scary because it is scary. Ideally, no pupil in primary or secondary education should be allowed to defy a teacher without serious consequences. When I was a head I used to ask the pupils 'did miss/ mr X ask you to do /or not to y,z? As you have defied her/him you have defied me.' Then the sanctions would follow. I tell you there is nothing that sends out a clearer message of unity among the staff to the pupils more than a united stand on such issues of discipline. If your line managers are willing to listen and help talk to them. If they are not, find a new school where you will be appreciated very soon. Your welfare and teaching career may be at stake.
  9. I totally understand how a small group of students can completely change/ruin the atmosphere in the classroom for a group of otherwise great students. At the beginning of this semester, I had a group just like this - a small group of two or three girls - on the brink of becoming teenagers - that preferred to disrupt the class, call attention to themselves, etc instead of being a part of the class. There was also a group of three boys that sometimes tended to go in this direction too. The rest of the class was great, but these small groups ruined everything and had me "at the end of my rope" by the end of the first week of classes! At this age, I've discovered that punishment doesn't seem to have much value to them. You can punish all you want, but they're feeling "cooler" with every punishment they get. They're getting attention not just from you, but from all their classmates. This "preadolescent" age is very "prideful" - the more you "punish" them, the more they hate you..... I realize that not being hated is not the goal of any teacher, but there has to be a better way - the kids should enjoy their classes! When they feel they are in a dictatorship, they lose all desire to learn!

    So, here's what I did: We spent one entire class talking about rules and consequences. I put the kids in groups (not their 'friend groups') and had each group make a list of what they thought were important classroom rules. After, each group got a chance to tell us their rules and why they thought they were important. As a class, we came up with 7 (that number is variable - whatever works for your class) that everyone in the class agreed on. After we had our rules set, I had each group come up with a list of three consequences. Not "send them out of the classroom", but things that could be resolved in the classroom. I don't think that sending the kids out of the classroom really works - they're out of the class they hate - woohoo!! Anyway, each group came up with three consequences and then again we listened to each group and worked together as a class to come up with our "class consequences". I was actually very impressed with the rules & consequences they came up with.

    So, I made a poster with the rules and another with the consequences. Each child decorated a square of construction paper with their name & any decoration they wanted. I put the lists and their names up on the wall under the heading "Star Students".

    That was all on the prep day. Here's how it works. At the very beginning of each class, we all read the rules together as a class. I made a badge for the "star student" and that student is awarded at the beginning of class. That is the student that helps with anything I need during the class. I try to create some activity that lets them write on the board or be an active part of helping in the classroom. They love the responsibility and the positive attention they get! In the last five minutes of class, we (as a class) talk about three students that obeyed all the rules that day and did a really good job in class, and then the "reigning star student" gets to choose who will be the star for the next days class. I try to lead the discussion in the direction of kids who haven't done it yet but are still good students. After a student has been the star in three different classes, they get a certificate and a "treat". They LOVE this incintive!!!

    On the other side of things, now the kids watch out for behaviour. They have the rules - they created the rules, not me. When someone breaks one of the rules, it's the kids that point it out and enforce the first consequence - again, something they all came up with and agreed upon. Classroom behaviour now isn't all on me. I "facilitate", not "babysit". The kids have taken the responsibility and let me get back to teaching!

    My class is completely different now!!! It is now the end of the semester and the kids are still excited each day when they come in. I haven't had a student make it past two consequences in one class (and that only happened once) - usually one consequence clears up any problem and they remember what they're working for.

    Another good thing about this is that each day is individual. A "bad kid" could have a good day and end up getting "star student" - once they get the positive attention and the pride from that, they don't want to go back!!

    Hope this helps someone!
  10. That's tough in your first year! I know a lot of advice has been given so I'm keeping this short. Have you tried rewards? Have a class reward system eg house/team points as per Harry potter/ Malory towers etc. reward chn with team points for good work/ role model behaviour. This could accumulate so each week the team with the most points gets a treat eg 20 mins on their fave ict game/ tv show etc.
    Golden time still works with y5 and y6. Chn can accumulate that. When those 2 are just sitting being bored while everyone else is having fun, they will come around. Over praise them with the team points. It takes time but does work. I'm also assuming they sit at opposite sides of the classroom with no eye contact?

    Good luck. Good book - getting the *** to behave :)
  11. Hi

    I am really supprised by some of these comments.
    Freaks !!!! So pray tell me what is normal? arent we supposed to be encouraging these young people to be free thinkers and express their individuality , whilst conforming to the rules and regulations we all have to live to? We should be educating them about equal opportunities, diversity.

    I teach these learners after they have left school 16-19. These learners have been failed by the Education system, not necessarily because of the teachers may I add, but because the teachers do not have the time or sometimes backing to get to know their learners and give them the support and IAG needed, only what the learners want to show.
    All of my learners have behavioural issues, I do not have a single hour of one of my sessions where my session is allowed to flow and i dont have to stop to deal with a situation. I fight fires daily, the difference is that I have learnt coping mechanisms..... remember negative attention is still attention, some of these young people have habitual behaviours that they cant change without ongoing support... try to praise what they do well , some young people only get negative comments, no-one gives them praise and recognition and they most probably think all you do is moan at them , so have little rerspect for them.If you start to build a more positive relationship with them, when you raise your issue or disapointment it has more of an impact. If they like talking can you incorporate more speaking & Listening exercises or group discussions into their learning??
    Dont get me wrong there are some days where all my advice above doesnt seem to make a difference, but overall it keeps things calmer than they were...
  12. You and these pupils are now firmly playing the roles of enemies. This dynamic needs to be changed. The point about kinesthetic learning styles is also valid here, in that some people do find it hard to learn if they are made to sit still for a long period, but of course some kids just enjoy having the power to disrupt the lesson! But as you have seen, punishments have not worked with these girls.
    So, try this: devise some activities that involve moving around the room and talking.
    For example, cut up a text which provides the information you want to teach, and stick each part somewhere on the classroom wall/ cupboard / door / window etc. with blu-tak. Give each student a question paper on the material with gaps to complete. Give them a time limit to go around the room finding the answers and writing them in. They can work in pairs or three's to do this - or they may work alone if they prefer. See which group can finish in the time allowed. Don't worry if they "cheat" by telling each other answers, as the aim is really to get them focused on the material. Make the time limit about 5 minutes too short to keep up the pace, then you can "generously" allow them an extra 5 minutes if necessary.
    To extend this, you can remix the groups so they compare answers and try to correct each other's. Then, if you want to extend it more, back to original groups to make any necessary alterations.
    Finally, answers can be shown on a slide, and / or discussed with the whole class.
    If you are afraid this will cause chaos, start wih just a couple of questions to give them the idea. Most likely they will enjoy this way of learning and want to do it for longer next time.
    Another time you can ask them to make the gapfill questions for each other. Even if they just sit and find the answers int heir text books, it is still motivating. Students who finish quickjly can also be asked to make up a couple of additional questions.
    Try to keep the attention off the disrputive girls - a bustling classroom can help with this. And try to start with a clean slate each day - good luck!

    Oh, and if you think the teacher inthe next room will wonder what is happening, warn them in advance!

  13. I don't think your comment is helpful. The advice given is sound and positive behaviour management is a very good model to incorporate into class teaching. Community comes when their are high expectations and the teachers values are not compromised by anyone in the room. Sanctions should be fair, commensurate and consistent. The focus should be on the effects the behavior is having on learning. I would support the notion that you need only once explain behaviour-sanction, yet its qualities should be consistently coached and the consequences for breaking the rules are consistently applied. Similarly, when a student should be rewarded, they should be rewarded...but only those that truly deserve it. When the students know you are going the extra mile for them in terms of your expectations and outcomes, the community will develop. I feel that your dismissive attitude to tried and tested skills and ideas for dealing with disruptive students and blaming it on the teacher as they have not engendered a sense of community is short sighted and blinkered in favour of the daily 5...There is no panacea for disruption like this...it becomes a learned skill...if you are willing to trial and improve the many pieces of advice you are give. GET REAL.
  14. Nobody has asked about either the schools policies and rules, or those in the classroom. Almost without exception, these should be adhered to. Any discussion should not waste learning time, else you are as guilty as the girls of reducing teaching time and quality.

    You haven't mentioned any policy, rules, or future plans. It sounds like you need to make a plan, show the head, and make him agreed support it. 100 percent.
  15. I think it's really important to make every day a fresh start. Have you tried to use a positive reward system for the girls - if they gain so many positive points they can go on the school trip, join the party or whatever treat everyone else who behaves enjoys, if not they don't go. They have obviously found out how to push your buttons and it's become a battle of wills. I think the head is right because they think you can't control them and you can - just take a deep breath and stay calm issuing your warnings / punishments but also a reward when they do as asked. Try and get to know them, keep them after school individually (divide and conquer) and give them jobs to do to help in the classroom - they seem to crave attention so maybe you could channel this for your benefit. I would give them as little attention as possible when they don't behave sanction and no matter how difficult carry on teaching the others and praising them to the skies. This process eventually wears down the culprits and quite often they become your best allies in the classroom. Good luck.
  16. I was appalled to read of the Head's lack of support !
    This is why children from some of the poorest countries in the world seem to know how to behave in a classroom while our own, in spite of the colossal amounts we spend on education, don't seem to understand the first principles of learning.
    We have teenagers from six or more different countries in each class and NONE of them EVER shows the lack of respect for teachers, and learning in general, as our very own, British-born kids.
    I despair for the future and for the fact that it's my tax money too that's being squandered on more and more high-tech resources instead of investing in some good-old-fashioned, decent behaviour.

Share This Page