Here's an easy step-by-step description of how to get started with a program of proactive strategies to prevent student problem behaviors (PBIS) combined with reactive strategies to address misbehaviors when they occur. We will discuss the following steps.
- Defining expectations
- Defining rules and the rules matrix
- Defining procedures
- Teaching expectations, rules and procedures
- Providing feedback and rewards
- Addressing teacher skills
- Selecting consequences
- Managing and improving the process
Motivate behavior with pride, not fear
Positive proactive strategies are basically about teaching the students about appropriate behaviors. It focusses on how to do things right. Ideally, students are taught how to behave, they learn those lessons and they behave well. They get positive feedback from teachers when they do the right things. The positive feedback reminds them of the desired behavior and gives them a feeling of pride for a job well done.
In the real world, with real kids, there will still be some misbehavior, so some need for reactive interventions. The key to making these interventions most effective is to think of them as teachable moments rather than punishments. The techniques of restorative discipline, for example, focus on “making things right” rather than simply punishing the offender. For example, in a harassment incident, making it right may involve the victim, apologies and efforts to restore lost feelings of security. Another type of intervention, Check In/Check Out, can be used for a student who may take some time to master the social skills required in class. Rather than simply punishing an outburst, Check In/Check Out provides practice and feedback over weeks or months that it may take to master the skills.
We advocate proactive behavior strategies and PBIS because we've seen them deliver dramatic improvements in student behavior. But Behavior Manager doesn't require that you use PBIS. Many of our customers do not use it or are transitioning to it. Behavior Manager can support your current behavior strategies and help you transition to more effective strategies. It's up to you.