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Please can someone offer me behaviour management advice?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by thedancingqueen, May 20, 2011.

  1. I'm on my final block placement at the moment, with a year 5 class. Overall, it's going very well and the children have produced a lot of good work, but I have to put a lot of effort in to actually get the class to contribute and some of the kids are quite lazy. Today, I was very nearly in tears during the last lesson of the day when I was teaching ICT, because I'd given the children a topic to research, I'd modelled exactly what to do, a lot of them were working far too slowly and worrying about the presentation of their work rather than the content, which I kept reminding them not to spend very long on because I'm more interested in what they write. There were two in the class who originally copied and pasted a few sentences from a website, deleted them and then at the end of the lesson, had just posted a web link on a powerpoint and written nothing. I did tell them several times throughout the lesson to get on and explained to that pair again, exactly what they had to do. I told them that if they didn't get on they'd have to spend Monday break doing the work and if they didn't get on, they'd be sent to the deputy head and they didn't pay a blind bit of notice. It's put me in a really bad mood and it did upset me. I know I shouldn't have shown it but I was nearly crying. I didn't realise that kids not working could give me that kind of reaction but they're not badly behaved kids. Maybe they're just lazy or afraid to put a bit of effort in. I always hate teaching ICT because the class does worry about the presentation of their work rather than the content so from now on, we'll just do plain word documents etc instead of powerpoint presentations. What else could I have done to make these kids work? The class teacher is off ill and so this class have tried to take advantage of that. I follow the school policies and try to be firm but fair, but they don't always listen and it infuriates me. If anyone has any tips for getting the kids to work faster or actually work in the first place, I really need them. This is the first time kids have refused to do work in one of my lessons, in any school I've taught on placement in. The kids didn't even apologise for their behaviour and didn't seem to care that their behaviour was bothering me. I was firm, without really shouting at them but it didn't make a difference. Please help!

    Also, if those two kids were in your class, how would you punish them? I've said they're staying in on Monday break to do their work but is that enough?
  2. I never sent them to the deputy head but that's what other teachers would have done. The reason I didn't was because I thought that would make me look bad as a trainee and make them think that I couldn't control the class, when normally we have no problems and everyone gets on. The two are slow workers and don't always try hard. I could have split them up but I think they would have still worked very slowly. I need some techniques to actually inspire kids to work faster. I put a lot of effort into actually planning the lessons so I want them to go well and of course for the kids to make progress, rather than learning nothing like the two kids today.
  3. maria66

    maria66 New commenter

    Hey dancing queen it is time to stop, take a step back and calm down, they are year 5 kids who are about to become Y6 who are developing there big fish in a small pond attitude, they are getting 'cocky and trying it on'
    Turn the tables - have a circle with the whole class, ask the good ones how those that don't do the right thing make them feel. Encourage the children to deal with their peers (but not by attacking them) tell the children how sad you feel, that you really feel let down and disappointed by their behaviour.
    I reward the children with ten mins of bite size free time at the end of ICT if they meet their objective - those that do not achieve do not get and it is amazing how quickly they conform.
    Losing playtime is one way but you need to be the one in charge and you don't need to give up a cup of coffee and some time away from them. Just take a deep breath and tell them if this, this and this is not done by a certain time your free time will not happen today.
    Just follow the schools behaviour policy and no-one will have any reason to have a go - when you shout you have lost the battle and I know that is easier said than done,
    Chill and keep smiling [​IMG]
  4. I didn't actually shout at them today but I told them I was disappointed and why. I hate shouting. I was upset but I would never insult the kids. I talked in a firm way, but I didn't raise my voice.
  5. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Make them do it in their break tomorrow!And if you feel they haven't done enough, the next day too! And so on! As someone above said, they're year 6 next year!
  6. Hi Dancing Queen,
    I sypathize with your situation, and looking back at the time I spent in training, this happened to me several times. I swear something to you......as soon as you are qualified, this will stop happening. Also, what was the consequence of them behaving in this way? If it was just a stern talking to, then this is probably why they are doing it. I spent far too long whilst training just threatening consequences, and not implementing them. Today, I would just give a deadline for some work, and tell them exactly what will happen if they don't do it. Never threaten something that you are not prepared to do, but make sure that there is a consequence.
  7. Ok, I'll talk to the class teacher about it once they're well and back in school again and can keep them in on Monday break to do their work. How can I prevent this from happening again please? I work incredibly hard to make the lessons as interesting, relevant and engaging as possible but some children still don't try hard. I have four more weeks of placement left and I have seen an improvement in some people's work. There is a wide range of abilities in the class but I have an idea of what they're capable of and what annoyed me is the fact that this pair didn't even try to do their work. They initially copied and pasted a chunk, deleted it and then just put the web link instead. We often share things as a class (class discussions etc). I just felt disappointed. I know that I shouldn't have let it get to me so much and I'll learn from it. I'm going to place much more of an emphasis on the people who do work well from now on and for ICT, I'll think of something they can do for the last ten minutes as a reward if they work well. I think they need incentives. They were recently planning a Science investigation and while they understood it, their writing was progressing at a slow rate. In the following lesson, when I said that I was looking for two children for pupil of the week based on how well they worked today, a lot of them managed to get it finished. I'm going to follow the school's reward policy and definitely place a greater emphasis on the positive behaviour, rather than letting things get to me. I'll still make sure everyone is on task but it took me a few hours today just to feel ok again and I don't want to let things upset me too much. I blame myself sometimes when they aren't working well.
  8. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    This is the classic mistake that trainees and NQTs make. Everyone else in the school would have sent the child out, but the student/NQT thinks it makes them look weak. How? If you know everyone else would have sent them out then you should as well, or they will take advantage. They see you as young and inexperienced and so an easy ride. Show them that you have substance and are not to be taken advantage of. Definitely no point telling them you will send them out if they carry on and then not sending them. They then won't take notice.

    ICT is often a nuisance lesson. They HAVE to get the work done right now as you won't get a slot again for a week and so you feel more stressed and this gets transferred to the children who then stop work altogether. And children do like to make their work look artistic and pretty it up. This is normal, don't stress about it.

    Do what (don't know, can't see the name) said above and next week build in some free time at the end. Make it restricted free time so you can police exactly which sites they go on. Any BBC school site works for me. Then be clear that if they don't work, they don't get their free time. End of story. Use SC to show what you will want to see at the end of the work session to let them have free time. Make sure 'presentation' is not part of it.

    But for this week, yes they do have to stay on Monday and do some work as that is what you have told them. If they can't do that in the ICT room, then have something linked to the task that they can copy out.

    You are doing well, just relax and have a good evening. Skip work until tomorrow.
  9. Thanks for the advice. I will keep them in on Monday and from now on, I will build in some free time at the end. The annoying thing is that ICT is last lesson on a Friday which I think is a bad slot because the lesson is only 50 mins max. 40 mins of hard work will be fine though and I'm going to make it clearer from now on exactly what I'm expecting and how much work they will need to do to get their free time. This will probably be a great incentive for getting them to work hard. I know I shouldn't have hesitated to send the children out today. I haven't needed to so far in my placement but if a similar situation arises in the future, I will do that. Praising the positive behaviour is a good idea. No chance of skipping work because I have a few exam finals coming up, but I'm not doing any school work tonight. I'm on top of planning and marking anyway. I'll definitely take your advice on board and will be learning from this experience and making sure it doesn't happen again. Those two children will not be working together next week in ICT, when we're starting a new task and luckily it doesn't involve powerpoints. I understand what you mean about them wanting to make their work look nice and I agree that it isn't necessarily a bad thing. It's just that with the lesson being shorter, they seem to spend more time on presenting their work than actually thinking about what they're writing. I just want to make sure they're actually learning something each week and while I use questioning techniques etc to check, I'm sure they could be learning a lot more. I'm off to revise to take my mind off it for a while but thanks again for the advice.

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