Bad behavior is common in school-age children, particularly when the teacher isn’t engaging students or if a more popular child is particularly disruptive – dragging everyone in the class down to his bad behavior. While there are limits on what a teacher can do in the classroom to combat bad behavior, there are a couple teaching methods that teachers can use to help minimize disruptive behavior and perhaps stop it before it gets out of hand.
First of all, some disruptive behavior happens if a child does not feel engaged in the lesson. If your teaching methods are not varied, you may not be connecting with students who have different learning styles in your classroom. There are three main learning styles that have been identified: visual, auditory and tactile. Visual learners will absorb more information from a book or picture than a lecture. Auditory learners can understand a lesson better if there’s a song or mnemonic device associated with it. Tactile learners have to physically participate in an activity before they can fully grasp a concept. Switching your teaching style to correspond with various learning styles when appropriate will help keep students more fully engaged on the lesson, instead of distracted by behavior that could soon turn disruptive.
Take advantage of lessons that have a variety of different types of learning methods that you can adapt for the classroom. Breaking up your lecture on a subject for a variety of visual and tactile interactions with your students will help to bring the lesson to the foreground and leave distractions behind. Don’t be afraid to change up the classroom structure, as well. Small group cooperative activities can help break up the monotony of a lecture and also gets kids working in groups that they normally wouldn’t choose themselves. This exposes children to both the benefit of collaborative work and can temporarily stop the classroom dynamics that lead to disruptive behavior. If two friends who normally sit near each other are sent to different groups, they make find that they can work better separately without the distraction. On the other hand, if two friends sit far apart from each other and disrupt classtime by constantly passing notes, putting them in a group together may take advantage of their need for cooperation.