Tag Archive for 'teachers'

Notes on notes home

Ever wondered whether it was worthwhile to send notes home about children’s behavior? This note will not provide comprehensive coverage of home-school communication, but there has been a bit of research about using home-school notes as a means of supporting behavior management. There is a system based on "Daily Behavior Report Cards," (DBRC) which is a broad term used to refer to a cluster of similar techniques. Essentially, teachers develop a fairly simple system for describing behavior and use it to communicate with parents; parents use the data to provide previously arranged consequences at home. 

photo of BD folks 2014
M. Tankersley, T. Landrum,
K. Vannest, & S. Forness
TECBD, Tempe, AZ, 2014

Of course, you can see many of the potential issues. Yes, please sing that song about the positives. Right, you'd need to plan the system so that the student wouldn't encounter terrible sanctions for a low report. You'll think of lots of other issues. More help on that in a few secs. 

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Teaching classroom management

The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ), a self-appointed group that generated quite a stir in 2006 with its report about reading education (“What Education Schools Aren’t Teaching About Reading–and What Elementary Teachers Aren’t Learning“), released a report about the absence of high-quality instruction in classroom management for prospective teachers in December of 2013: Training our teachers: Classroom management. Readers of Behavior Mod will likely find the report rather distressing, because it shows a glaring absence of tutelage in the use of behavioral principles in teaching.

The NCTQ identified five classroom management strategies that it considered especially valuable for students to acquire during their teacher preparation programs:

Arts and b mod actually can mix

Perhaps it’s just my perception, but I think a lot of people see the arts and behavioral principles as antithetical. That is, one who embraces the arts holds philosophical views that are incompatible with behaviorism. Of course, this is not true, from my point of view, but I’ve suspected that others considered it true.

Even if it is true on average, I came upon another exception to the rule. Over on Diversified ART , Anita Dallar presented a set of recommendations for teachers that incorporates important elements of basic behavior modification principles. Ms. Dallar, who apparently both makes art and teaches art making, posted the article under the title, “Applying Positive Behavior Modification – A Quick Reference for Teachers.” Give it a read!

GBG implementation grant

Here’s a winning story from a little while back. Under the headline “FdL School District receives $500,000 grant,” the Oskkosh (WI, US) Northwestern reported that a local education agency will be using grant funds to implement the venerable Good Behavior Game (GBG) in its classrooms. The leadership of Fond du Lac School District has already adopted a positive behavior support system, and the GBG will fit right into it well. Notably, the Fond du Lac schools folks adopted the GBG before it recently received renewed recognition from the US Top Tier Evidence organization.

The Fond du Lac School District recently was awarded the Prevention Practices in Schools Grant.

The award is for $100,000 a year for five years.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services, awarded the grant to allow the district to implement evidence-based prevention practices in schools, according to a school district press release.

The purpose of the program is to prevent aggressive and disruptive behavior among young children in the short term, and prevent antisocial behavior and the use of illicit drugs in the longer term.

The district will be implementing a program called the Good Behavior Game, which is a behavioral classroom management strategy that involves helping children learn how to work together.

Read the full article, “FdL School District receives $500,000 grant.” Learn more about Fond du Lac School District. Check out coverage on Teach Effectively about Top Tier Evidence recognition of the GBG.

Precision Teaching conference pending

The 2010 International Precision Teaching Conference will be held in Seattle (WA, US) 4-6 November 2010. Sponsored by the Standard Celeration Society, a group that promotes the use of systematic data collection procedures and objective analysis of instructional practices, the conference promises to have lots of reports that will appeal to readers of Behavior Mod. There will be special rates for students, excellent presentations, lots of chances for interaction with knowledgable folks. Check it out!

Where: Holiday Inn, 211 Dexter Ave. North, Seattle, WA 98109—Hotel Front Desk: 1-206-728-8123 | Hotel Fax: 1-206-728-2779 (Group Reservation Code: Morningside
When: 4-6 November 2010
Registration: See the Celeration.org page pointing to the Paypal form for the registration link!

Behavior contracts that work

Over on Smart Classroom Management, the site where he presents tips based on his book, Michael Linsin offers three reasons for not using behavior contracts. After a brief introduction that is generally pretty accurate, he argues that (a) “behavior contracts label students,” (b) “external rewards are short term,” and (c) “follow through is a bear.” He recommends employing a consistent behavior management plan for classrooms and adhering to it faithfully.

I certainly agree with the recommendation that teachers adopt and faithfully execute a carefully conceived and evidence-based classroom management plan, but I disagree with Mr. Linsin’s rejection of use of behavior contracts both because I think that contracts may be a component of a comprehensive management plan and because I think the objections he raises are specious.
Continue reading ‘Behavior contracts that work’

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