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Reception aged child behaviour deteriorates following praise

Discussion in 'Behaviour' started by Chicken_madras, Apr 4, 2017.

  1. Chicken_madras

    Chicken_madras Occasional commenter

    Evening. I posted in early years but thought I might find some suggestions here too. NQT in reception and I have a child in my class who displays challenging behaviour who seems to have an aversion to praise. To encourage positive behaviour, members of SLT have started giving the child stickers for having a good morning, which at the time they are all smiles and proud. But each time this happens their behaviour subsequently spirals. Any ideas on how I can encourage positive behaviour but not over praise?
  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Perhaps ask said child what reward he/she would like and give a choice?
    Chicken_madras likes this.
  3. sarah_dann1

    sarah_dann1 Occasional commenter TES Behaviour peer advisor

    That's an interesting situation. Often poor responses to praise is put down to lack of self-confidence/embarrassment at being singled out in front of others, although perhaps more commonly in older children. However, it's interesting that at the time you say the child appears to be pleased. Could this be a factor?

    Have you tried making the time scale longer? For example giving the praise at the end of the full day rather than just the morning? Hopefully then the child would go home feeling positive and not have time to spoil it in the afternoon?

    You could try a moveable praise/reward display throughout the day to keep behaviour on track. Perhaps a mountain to climb and his/her name or representative object moves up the mountain as the day progresses as they work hard/play politely/help/answer questions/finish tasks but equally it can be moved backwards down the mountain if they call out/answer back/ are off task etc.

    If something more private would be more suitable, you could do this on a mini-whiteboard on their desk.

    Could they work towards something such as golden time/treat time?

    Harsher option, what response would removing the sticker get do you think? I see you say reception age so potentially this is not a good idea but you will know the child and whether any punitive strategies would work.

    Probably more positive encouragement like a longer term goal will be the best way forward. This could be something you discuss with him/her to set some goals and this could be individual or something you aim to get the child to work collaboratively on. Certainly extending the time frame I think would be a good way to start.
  4. Chicken_madras

    Chicken_madras Occasional commenter

    Thank you for your responses. Lots to consider. I will speak with SLT about the sticker that the child only gets it at the end of the day.
    One of the issues is that anything we achieve at school is quickly undermined at home as the child has not got a stable environment at home and they do not receive any real consequences for poor behaviour at home. We usually have our work cut out for us after the holidays!

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