Setting Rules & Expectations: A Vital Aspect of Classroom & Behavior Development

Do you find it challenging as a teacher to maintain discipline & decorum in the classroom? Are you daunted by the fact that you’ve to manage a large group of students? Well, it’s not easy to ensure that students will demonstrate appropriate & desired behavior every time you enter the class.

The first step towards it is setting the rules and expectations & explaining them to them clearly. If you’re an educator at the elementary level, then you must build a classroom & behavior development plan.

An effective plan is to create the classroom rules and expectations relevant to your educational environment. You need to execute this at the beginning of the year and by working together with your students. Remember to exhibit these classroom rules and expectations, refer to them, and above all implement them. Children never turn their back on those rules that are consistent and impartial. The implementation of your classroom rules will mean that some learners will need more attention from you than others.

Quite often these students will not understand that they are using unwanted or intolerable behavior. Using positive reinforcement can prove to be effective on some learners and they will quickly understand which behaviors are expected and which are unwanted. They will promptly learn how to adhere to your classroom rules and live up to your expectations.

How to deal with students who are not following your rules?

If you have a learner or learners with unacceptable behavior and are struggling to follow your classroom rules then try the following tactics;

  • It’s important that the learners understand the rules, and what to do and what not to do. They must understand what is expected from them along with the repercussions, consequences, & punishments for violating a rule or disrupting the class.
  • Sometimes expelling from the classroom or giving them verbal warning can prove to be effective for mild offenses.
  • Refrain from berating or reprimanding them in front of the whole class and speak to them privately. Instead, non-verbal cues such as body language, eye contact, gestures, can be used for rectifying them.
  • It is also important to be sensitive to the whole group behaviors as well as individuals. Always shower words of praise when they do something positive and your students understand how you feel about the negative. Responsibility for their own behavior should always be encouraged.
  • Intervention from parents & counselors may be required if they are continuing to display unwanted behavior despite warnings & punishments.

What rules work in the classroom & behavior development?

Classroom rules establish limitations and present clear boundaries of behavior for your students. Classroom rules set boundaries to educate students on how far they can push the wall and what will be accepted in the classroom. Teachers should establish and clearly explain the classroom rules on the first day of the academic session.

But exactly what rules teachers should enforce in the classroom & behavior development & what do they need to do on a regular basis to prevent or reduce incidents of misbehavior? Here are some of them:

  • Teach students to respect the teachers, peers, elders & others and listen to them carefully when they’re speaking rather than interrupting.
  • Be ready for the class every day. Come prepared with all the materials including textbooks, notebooks, pen, pencil, eraser, etc. Staying focused & motivated in the classroom is vital.
  • Zero tolerance towards bullying, harassment, taunting remarks, aggression & physical violence towards peers & regular disruption of classes.
  • Passing of rude or unparliamentary remarks or comments, making noises during instruction time, and harming school properties are strictly prohibited.
  • Establishing positive reinforcement strategy to change or rectify inappropriate behavior. It is considered a reinforcing stimulus and helps in encouraging the behavior, conduct, and etiquette that are anticipated from learners. Some of the examples of positive reinforcements are rewards, words of praise, offering a pat on the back & showing thumps up.
  • Considering role-playing rules; & offering students a chance to act out examples and nonexamples of each class rule. It is an exciting activity and palpable way to scrutinize rules at the start of the school year. Apart from enforcing classroom rules, social and emotional learning (SEL) can facilitate students to build compassion and the social and emotional competencies of self-consciousness, self-supervision, social awareness, relationship skills, and credible decision making. With positive class rules, teachers can improve student behavior inside & outside the classroom.
  • Preparing regular routines, assignments & activities to keep students engaged & distractions at bay. Teachers must take the initiative & make sure that they are stimulating & helps in maintaining discipline & decorum in the classroom.

Want to become more effective in your approach towards making students disciplined? Join IITT for its exclusive online workshop in Classroom & Behavior Development. In this in-depth digital workshop, you’ll learn to make the classroom setting conducive to learning & create rules & enforce strategies that will ensure ideal conduct and behavior by students. Sign up now and stay at the top of your game as a teacher.