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When a child misbehaves, there is always a “want” or a goal behind the misbehavior. When a student is seeking attention, which often is something that children will want, they want attention from either the adults around them or their peers. When identifying the attention-seeker students, teachers must “meet with them and inform them that while you enjoy assisting them, there are many students who need help and you can usually provide individual attention only a few times each morning and afternoon” (Jones & Jones, 2016, p 297). While this meeting may calm them and help the situation, additional plans may be in order to help the students.
When it comes to a student wanting power, one strategy that teachers can employ that will assist them in responding with violations of classroom rules and procedures are to allow the student to have that “power” that they want as a positive reinforcement. This power includes encouraging and allowing them to be a leader. Let them be the teacher helper, help a peer who is struggling with an area that they exceed academically in, allow them to do “special errands”, etc. These must be used as positive reinforcement and not as a “they are misbehaving and I need it to stop” kind of thing.
When a student wants revenge, the behavior may become disrespectful, violent, or even out of control. They may seek revenge toward a teacher for a bad grade or a student that they do not like. Seeking revenge is due to wanting justice or things to be fair in the eyes of who is seeking it. While this may be one of the more difficult situations, it is important for teachers to assist students overcome this where they can. This can be by having a one on one conversation with them or having the guidance counselor do so, being calm when the student is not, and continuing to keep ears and eyes open monitoring what happens in and out of the classroom.
Avoidance is often shown when it comes to completing work. While often the avoidance can seen like laziness or defiant actions, I have seen personally that avoidance is due to lack of understanding or comprehension of the content. They are avoiding the feeling of failing, being let down, or letting others down. This causes frustration, lack of self esteem, and lack of motivation. Teachers can assist them in responding to avoidance by providing an abundance of encouragement as well as not giving up on them and not letting them give up on themselves. If it is the work that is causing the avoidance, accommodations and modifications can be a solution.
Jones, V. F., & Jones, L. S. (2016). Comprehensive classroom management: Creating communities of support and solving problems (11th ed.). Boston: Pearson.
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