Effective Teaching Behaviors
Chapter 1: Introduction
1.1 Scope of the Research
Attending kindergartens, schools, colleges, and universities, students do not only receive knowledge, but also gain new skills and learn some new behaviors. Attending educational establishments, students act as they got used to. However, such behavior is not always appropriate, and teachers try to show students using all the possible ways how they are to behave. In other words, students are brought up. The problem of the ways to teach students behavior has been bothering teachers and scholars of different levels and qualifications for many years. Managing the classroom is one of the main means to achieve success in teaching and learning. Unfortunately, students have less desire to learn than they should do, which leads to misconduct while classes and inappropriate attitude to the tasks they are given. Nowadays, teachers are the most important factors, which help students succeed. In case teachers do not insist on appropriate behavior and fail to manage the classroom, no knowledge will be imposed on students (Marzano, Marzano, & Pickering, 2003).
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1.2 Importance of the Research
Disruptive behavior during lessons still occurs, and thus, it is important to develop the means to control students’ behavior. In the past, teachers and administrators were allowed to refer to corporal punishment in classes with the purpose to prevent unwanted behavior (Greydanus, Pratt, Spates, Blake-Dreher, Greydanus-Gearhart, & Patel, 2003). However, with the development of civilization, schools were prohibited to use such cruel and absolutely unacceptable means to manage the classroom. Modern scholars work on the way to understand which means for managing the classroom are the most effective and applicable to the contemporary world. It should be noted that students in the modern word need good motivation and their behavior should be appropriate managed as using some random means or failure to apply any may lead to ineffective education and the complete inability to manage the class. The problem occurs due to a number of reasons, connected to differences in social and cultural behavior in the families, the low level of upbringing, aggressive, disruptive, and defiant behavior of students, low parental control, raised mass media influence, etc. The reasons why the problems have occurred are numerous. Some of them should be mentioned in order to understand the reasons why the problem of studying effective means of teaching students behavior is crucial in the modern world.
After corporal punishment had been forbidden and teachers had not developed any other effective ways of managing classroom and interventions and proactive ways to teach expected behaviors and hold students accountable, such movements received a wide spread among youths as the disappearance of cultural value, crimes, drugs and alcohol abuse, AIDS, suicides, and licentiousness. Students had problems with cultural and spiritual values and paid more attention to financial welfare, wealth, money, individual interests and freedom without any responsibilities. As a result, the system of values of young people was ruined, thus giving way to irresponsible behavior and absolute ignorance of any rules and norms. Such a state of affairs showed that the system of education lacked some set goals and principles of education in general. This lack was fulfilled by the students’ environment, not always positive, by new priorities, and by the information from mass media, which was not always useful to the unformed young generation. Therefore, to cultivate moral and cultural values among students in the face of the fast social change, the discipline rules and norms should be developed in order to arrange effective classroom management (Garegae, 2008). This is one of the reasons why scholars should work on developing the models for teaching students expected behavior in the educational establishments.
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It is impossible to study without good discipline at the lesson. Teachers cannot run lectures, make instructions, and interview students in ineffective and undisciplined classes. Adisciplined group is not the one where everyone sits under the fear of punishment, but the one that works. Everyone works. All students should be busy, they should listen to explanations of a teacher, discuss the problems together or in groups, solve various issues, and conduct experiments. If everyone works with tension, the lesson is productive. The discipline of students in the classroom is a difficult work. It is characterized by a good emotional mood and inner concentration, but not by stiffness. The discipline in the class for the sake of creating good working conditions is a guarantee of fruitful educational work. Therefore, it is important to study the means of teaching behavior to guarantee effective knowledge.
1.3 Research Questions
The main objective of the current capstone research is not only to define the possible ways of teaching behavior in educational establishments, but also to analyze their effectiveness and to develop a set of strategies, required for interventions and proactive ways to teach expected behavior among students and make them accountable. Despite the fact that motivation plays an important role in maintaining discipline among students, this aspect will not be considered as the primary issue in problem discussion. Much attention is going to be paid to the already conducted research in the field with the purpose to define the best ways of teaching behavior and seeing the limitations, which can be used for further deeper analysis and research in the following discipline and class management in the American educational system. What are the modern ways to teach students behavior? How can these ways of behavior be implemented? Is there any difference between teaching appropriate behavior of students with disabilities and those without them?
1.4 Connection to Grand Tour Question
The problem of the ways of correcting and improving students’ behavior during classes is a guarantee of successful education. The lack of students’ discipline also leads to ineffective education, which is another reason why the problem of teaching expected student behavior is raised. The vast majority of American schools do not have any penalties for poor behavior. As a result, children understand that they will not be punished for carelessness and disobedience. Thus, children do not respect either each other or teachers. Such an effect was reached by school democratization in the past. Such an environment significantly influenced the behavior of students. Students have become more active, independent and initiative, free to express their opinion, and without any desire to follow any school disciplinary rules. These circumstances raise serious concerns of the teachers who understand that positive changes may, however, cause significant difficulties in the educational process, reduce its effectiveness, and adversely affect the level of education and training of students. However, the absence of changes in school discipline can lead to more serious consequences, such as the reduction of students’ knowledge. Walters and Frei (2007) state that about half of the lesson time can be spent on maintaining discipline in class, which prevents from effective education. Only a good discipline in the class can guarantee quality knowledge and successful education in general.
1.5 Definition of Terms
Disruptive student behavior is the type of behavior, when students prevent instructor from successful running management of the class and running a lecture (Guirdino & Fullerton, 2010).
Classroom management is the term, which describes an effective lesson without any signs of disruptive behavior (Marzano, Marzano, & Pickering, 2003).
Behavior change is a transformation or modification of students’ behavioral patterns (Michie, Stralen, & West, 2011).
Inclusion is the process, which helps involve students with disabilities into the learning process in the ordinary school with students without disabilities (Emmett & Monsour, 1996, p. 7).
Therefore, the study under consideration should be devoted to the analysis of the possible ways of improving student behavior during classes in order to prevent the cases of disruptive behavior and improve the quality of education. Nowadays, the quality of education plays a very important role in human life, since having the availability to much information it is important to synthesize and systematize the information, which is possible only in case students behave appropriately at the lessons. Disruptive behavior in class may prevent from successful education at any age and any level of getting knowledge; therefore, teachers should learn how to change students’ behavior and promote classroom management effectively. Thus, the main purpose of the research is to discuss the possible ways of eliminating disruptive behavior and to change students’ behavior. The main idea of this capstone research is to conduct a literature review with the purpose to see the scope of knowledge in the field under consideration and to provide the conclusions and recommendations for further study of the problem and development of the most effective way of teaching students behavior.
Chapter 2: Literature Review
The analysis of teachers’ actions in case of students’ behavior disorders should start with the understanding of teachers’ perceptions of the problems. It has been considered that students’ poor behavior can be understood as the lack of desire to study, as some personal inability for adequate actions and even some social and emotional problems children experience. Tillery, Varjas, Meyers, and Collins (2010) conducted a research among teachers with the purpose to understand their perceptions of students’ poor behavior during classes and to “provided a narrative picture of teachers’ perceptions of behavior and factors that contributed to behavior and behavior management” (p. 97). Most teachers agreed that students’ behavior is a reaction to the stimuli or situations, occurred at class. The authors identified that the in-class and outside environment plays a very important role in students’ behavior. Paying attention to individuals, teachers in the current research ignored the group and community signs, which also influenced the mode of behavior and could impact individual patters. Much attention of the current research is paid to home and family upbringing. Teachers indicated that family upbringing plays an important role in student behavior. Therefore, to correct one’s set of conduct, it is necessary to change the attitude inside the family to student’s behavior in general (Tillery, Varjas, Meyers, & Collins, 2010).
Overall, teachers tend to search for the new ways of developing behavioral programs for students, who have issues with disciplines. Browning-Wright et al. (2007) analyzed the influence of the trainings teachers receive with the purpose to develop “high quality positive behavior support plans for students that engage in problem behaviors that interfere with theirs and/or others’ ability to learn” (p. 89). As a result of the study, it was defined that teachers were more interested in positive behavior support plans, developed for the students and the effects they bring. Therefore, according to this study, teachers are looking for new and better ways of behavior control and corrections and they are open to new methods and strategies, which may be effective and which prove to be easy in implementation and with the low level of time and effort required. The main idea of the current literature review is to see the perception of teachers and researchers of students’ behavior disorder and how they see it is possible to correct it. The literature review is aimed at gathering the information about some specific strategies aimed at correcting students’ behavior, namely, classroom management, feedback, and the implementation of behavior change programs at school.
2.2 Classroom Management
Much attention in the modern academic world is paid to the problem of classroom management among students with different disabilities. The issue related to students with and without disorders requires additional consideration because modern classrooms are full of both types of students. The right of students with different types of disabilities to education is guaranteed by the law. However, such students more frequently raise their desire to study in the same classroom with other students without any problems. Harr-Robins, Song, Garet, and Danielson (2015) discussed the differences and similarities of the students with disorders and the students without them have in the educational process. The findings showed the low level of differences, which supports the mixture of disabled and non-disabled students in one classroom. Studying the choice interventions as a means to control student behavior, Shogren, Faggella-Luby, Bae, and Wehmeyer (2004) paid closer attention to the students with behavior disabilities. The major finding the authors indicated is that the behavior modified interventions are the most effective in early ages. The authors stressed that instructional time could be increased in case of choice interventions applied for problem behavior students during classes. Making stress on autism, Rivera (2008) also confirmed that intensive behavioral intervention is one of the best ways used as the treatment of choice. Choice highlights students’ freedom, which cannot be considered as the violation of the students’ rights and, at the same time, is used for maintaining discipline in the classroom. Teaching students with autism is a very complicated process, and the authors stressed on the effectiveness of the use of choice interventions since they help in scheduling students’ time and incorporating harder discipline.
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Another aspect, which requires attention in the problem of teaching behavior, is inclusion. Inclusion is the basic notion, which explains the process of involving students with disabilities into the learning process. The sense of inclusion can help students “trust each other, get to know teachers, share common problems, and learn appropriate behaviors” (Emmett & Monsour, 1996, p. 7). When students are included in the process of classroom management, they become more responsible and trustful. Roache and Lewis (2011) confirmed that students who “are more responsible for their own behavior and the behavior of their peers” are more disciplined. The study conducted by the authors indicated hinting, discussion, involvement, and reward as the basic means for inclusion in the educational process. The findings are based on the reports of 3500 students, who have studied the effective measures for reducing misconduct. Rodriguez-Falcon, Evans, Allam, Barrett, and Forrest (2010) indicated the following strategies of inclusion in the classroom strategies, handouts and critical thinking. However, there is an opinion that inclusion strategy cannot work effectively, since teachers are not prepared to bear the whole responsibility from the outcomes. The inclusion strategies are effective when both teachers and students are ready for interrelation. However, when teachers have not shifted from the previously selected strategies, they may fail to incorporate different inclusion strategies for preventing misconduct.
Teachers should think about new ways of practice for students in case of choosing an inclusion strategy. The study conducted by Rouse (2008) confirmed that a shift to an inclusion strategy as a measure to combat misconduct in classroom is a difficult affair, which requires changes at the head level. First of all, the teachers should understand that the whole process depends on their strength and desire to implement change. Second, the basic areas should be indicated, in order to make sure that the shift to a new strategy is adequate, these areas are “educational rights, anti-determinism and learning for all” (Rouse, 2008, p. 16). Third, inclusion is a new strategy not only for students with disabilities, but also for other students, and thus, it is important to see the reaction of all members of the educational process. Being involved in the educational process, students feel responsibility for personal actions, they are interested and motivated, and, therefore, they do not have time for disruptive behavior. Further, the behavior is changed, and it becomes a norm to act adequately, without lesson interruptions.
Since disruptive behavior is one of the main reasons for searching for the strategies to change students’ behavior, it is necessary to understand the reasons of such behavior. One of the basic reasons of unsatisfactory behavior during classes is an unfavorable environment. The change of the environment can be considered as one of the strategies for behavior improvement. Guirdino and Fullerton (2010) develop three steps with several sub-steps to apply this strategy in a classroom. The first step is to observe the situation to assess it. The authors offer to observe students and the situations when they experience disruptive behaviors. This is the point where the change should begin as after having understood what provokes disruptive behavior, teachers will be able to start acting. The modification of the classroom environment is the next step in changing students’ environment. After having gathered the information from different sources, Guirdino and Fullerton (2010) offer the following sub-steps in this major step aimed at changing the classroom environment in order to help students remove disruptive behavior and assist a teacher in managing the classroom effectively.
Guirdino and Fullerton (2010) assure that one of the reasons of students’ disruptive behavior is the absence of personal space. Therefore, teachers should offer students some personal areas for privacy. Teachers should also have some set place, which will help them always return there. Students should see that everything has its place. A teacher should also change his/her place in order to meet the lesson needs. Students should not distract from the lesson, and a teacher’s desk is the first place where they direct their attention to. Students often distract from the lesson by means of visuals and other aspects, which create an unfavorable environment for learning. The authors recommend decreasing or even changing the place of the visuals, which may possibly distract students’ attention. Therefore, the elimination of the problem may lead to positive results and behavior change. A teacher should grasp attention of the whole class. It is important to have an access to any part of the class and to any student. Therefore, clear pathways between students’ places should guarantee a fast availability to each student in the classroom (Guirdino and Fullerton, 2010).
Working with many students and involving different types of instruction and activities, teachers should clearly distinguish those who work individually and those who work in pairs. Guirdino and Fullerton (2010) are sure that only when the territory is measured students are able to work effectively understanding where their places are. Modern world has brought a lot of techniques, which may cause mass during lessons. One of the primary goals of a teacher, according to Guirdino and Fullerton (2010), is to guarantee that there is no any source of noise at the classroom. So, students should be asked to turn off their cell phones. The task of the teacher is also to delete any other possible sources of noise, which may distract students and prevent them from effective studying. Finally, Guirdino and Fullerton (2010) are sure that to change the classroom environment teachers should adjust lighting and temperature, as well as to guarantee a good air flow. These physical characteristics are also important since they help students orient on the education. A too high temperature or a lack of fresh air may prevent students from effective thinking processes. Therefore, these recommendations are considered as the best ones aimed at changing the classroom management, which is aimed at removing disruptive behavior and arranging an effective educational process supported with behavior change.
The third stage in teaching students’ behavior is devoted to the analysis of the work done and the understanding of the achievements and failures. In case of the effective implementation of this strategy for changing classroom management and, therefore, the behavior change, teachers should support the same conditions in the classroom and make sure that the environment does not worsen, but becomes even better and better. A disruptive environment does not mean that students do not want to learn, it means they have some unfavorable conditions or poor environment, which should be changed. The strategy offered by Guirdino and Fullerton (2010) is an effective tool in changing students’ behavior and helping them act adequately. A classroom environment is one of the basic components of successful education and appropriate behavior. If students are dissatisfied with the environment and want some changes, they will show their disagreement by disruptive behavior. Thus, before applying any other strategies, teachers should adequately assess their classroom and its environment.
Classroom management has been grouped under three major headings in the article by Gulcan (2010), namely, communication, pressure-threatening, and physical punishment methods. These headings have been developed under the influence of such factors as “personality traits of teachers, social, psychological, cultural and educational status of a student, level of class, physical properties of school, organizational structure, as well as the vocational knowledge and skill of the teachers” (Gulcan, 2010, p. 258). The research conducted among 316 students of Technology Faculty in Gazi University was focused on analyzing students’ perceptions of teachers’ actions when dealing with misconduct or disruptive behavior. The descriptive-survey method was used to assess the measures teachers implement when dealing with behavioral disorders. Students indicated that loud voice was the most frequently used measure. Teachers indicated several possible ways of reaction to misconduct; however, loud voice was the most frequently determined measure. Applying to communication as to the means of dealing with incorrect behavior, Gulcan (2010) specified that “giving advice” and “controlling by eye contact” are also the communication methods of influence. Despite the effectiveness of the method, students indicated the problem. Using the “warning verbally” method for restricting misconduct or reacting to disruptive behavior, students are sure that teachers do not even try to understand their behavior when they implement any of the methods mentioned. To the point, the author of the study indicated the following possible methods to influence misconduct, namely, ignoring, raising or lowering voice, the application of some non-verbal techniques (eye contact, gestures, pauses, etc), praising of positive behavior, reminding the class and school rules, making some humorous warnings, and depriving students from some privileges they were previously graded with. The contribution of the study conducted by Gulcan (2010) is focused not only on defining the most frequent method teachers use, but also on analyzing this method from the side of its effectiveness.
Overall, classroom management is a very complicated process, which requires much time and effort from teachers. The first step in any type of class management should be the analysis of the environment, and further teachers are free to decide which strategy to choose. Classroom management is an inevitable part in any lesson structure. In case teachers want to achieve a friendly and positive environment in class, they are to be able to manage their classroom effectively, which is impossible without the set strategies and the checked steps.
2.3 Feedback as a Means of Behavior Control
When the process of inclusion has been completed and a new class has already been formed, the cases of misconduct still may occur. Teachers in this case should think about other means of maintaining disciple in the classroom. Speaking about the similarities and differences of the students with and without emotional and behavioral disorders have, Scott, Alter, and Hirn (2011) conducted a research checking how positive and negative feedback influence their behavior. The research was conducted among 1000 students of elementary and high schools. It should be mentioned that the researchers used 80% of students with emotional and behavioral disorders and only 20% of students without them. The current research was based on the assumption that students with emotional and behavioral disorders showed more disruptive behavior. As a result, they received less knowledge, fewer instructions, and fewer opportunities to gain good knowledge. Therefore, the researchers tried to achieve both behavioral and academic improvements. Scott, Alter, and Hirn (2011) referred to the observational method, including self-reports, students’ and teachers’ interviews. The research had very important observations. Thus, 62.1% of the lesson time is spent on teaching, while 37.8% of time is devoted to other non-teaching activities. Positive feedback was provided every 16.67 minutes, while negative feedback was shared every 14.29 minutes. To the point, corrections were also included into the negative feedback section. While dnalyzing students’ behavior, it was noted that disruptive behavior was recorded every 16.67 minutes. Moreover, only 39% of the class time students actively followed the curriculum. It was significant to know that 42% of time students passively followed the curriculum, 13% of time they were off-task, and 6% of lesson time was recorded as down time, understood as spoiled time without any tasks and expectations.
The comparison of the positive and negative feedback received by students with and without emotional and behavioral disorder showed that there was no difference in receiving positive feedback, while students with emotional and behavioral disorder received negative feedback every 10 minutes in comparison to every 16.67 minutes of negative feedback received by students without emotional and behavioral disorder. Thus, this study is very useful in understanding whether positive and negative feedback can be considered as the measures for changing students’ behavior. By discussing the research results obtained by Scott, Alter, and Hirn (2011), it is possible to see that either teachers ignore positive actions or students show negative feedback more frequently. Using positive and negative feedback as a way to change students’ behavior can work if the number of positive feedback increases. The rates have helped the researchers indicate the further scope of study directed at using positive and negative feedback as a way to control students’ behavior and eliminating misconduct and disruptive acts.
The role of feedback in teaching adequate behavior students and coping with misconduct and disruptive behavior has shown its effectiveness in other studies. Thus, 5:1 positive-to-negative communication behaviors with students with emotional and behavioral disorders initiated in the classroom confirmed that students like when they are praised rather than when they are punished for something. The results of the study help see that negative communication in direction to students does not work as effective as positive feedback, as stated by Rathel, Drasgow, Brown, and Marshall (2014). The role of positive and negative feedback in academic achievement is received much spread while not much research is devoted to the analysis of feedback and its influence on disruptive behavior. After having analyzed the role of positive feedback on students’ behavior, Dufrene, Lestremau, and Zoder-Martell (2014) stated that it is very important for students to understand what they are praised for. Receiving a positive feedback is always a pleasure, and only when students understand what they receive them for, they can correct their behavior in a positive way. Feedback is a strong means for influencing students, however, it should be considered as an additional measure as for now as there is no effective strategy, which can be applied as a system into a classroom for making students behave as the teacher wants. Therefore, feedback for behavior change should be studied in detail for creating a set of steps and systems for applying in a classroom as a separate tool for teaching students behavior.
Despite much affirmative research in relation to the studies on positive feedback, Knoch (2011) did not find any differences in perception of the absence and presence of the positive feedback in a long term period. Specifically, the author defined that there is a difference in behavior with and without positive feedback, but students themselves do not notice any differences, which is a good starting point for the study of the influence of positive and negative feedback and its absence on students’ behavior and its correction. This study involves cognitive processes and their involvement into the behavioral and reaction aspects. According to Knoch (2011), receiving a feedback people can make a decision whether to use it as a stimulus for further behavior or leave unattached. Since behavior of students changed after the feedback, they cannot reject its influence.
Overall, the use of feedback has been studied in many research projects, and in most cases the effectiveness of the letter has been proven. However, when dealing with misconduct and disruptive behavior, it is essential to understand whether positive or negative feedback is effective in dealing with behavior teaching among students. Positive feedback is a strong regulator of behavior as its use promotes faster learning of appropriate behavior in class. However, not every positive feedback can bring some benefit to a student, as well as negative feedback is not always bad. There is neither bad nor good feedback; there is appropriate and inappropriate expression of opinion. Teachers should understand when a positive feedback is appropriate and at which moment a negative one should be implemented as only in this case feedback will be an effective means for behavior teaching.
2.4 Positive Behavior Interventions
The analysis of the possible behavioral programs should start with the discussion of the teachers’ awareness of the existence of such programs and their effectiveness, according to the research conducted by Tillery, Varjas, Meyers, and Collins (2010) in the rural school system located in the Southeastern United States. The main peculiarity of the school system was announced implementation of response to intervention (RTI) and positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) programs and training conducted devoted to these issues. The research results were rather upsetting since most of the respondents knew little about those programs despite the trainings they attended. Therefore, discussing the possible programs for behavior change, which have been used as the intervention in some schools, may be a new knowledge for other schools, which is a valuable contribution to the modern knowledge.
How it works:
Hawken, MacLeod, and Rawlings (2007) offered a special behavioral program aimed at reducing the cases of office discipline referrals of elementary school students. The main idea of the behavior education program is based on the feedback students constantly receive and on the structured work they have. This program is also called check-on and check-out since after having come to the class, a student receives a list of tasks he/she is going to accomplish today. By working on each task, a student receives a feedback with some comments and scores for the work done. At the end of the day, the scores are calculated to see whether the student has managed to accomplish personal goals successfully. He or she has also received some recommendations what should be improved. The research was conducted in the urban school with 655 students involved. However, at the end of the experiment, only 12 students were selected since they managed to meet all the necessary requirements, among which was behavioral disorder.
Overall, the behavior education program is effective as it has managed to reduce the number of office discipline referrals for students under analysis. On average, the reduction occurred by 39.5%, which is a good result, since such a specific procedure implementation does not require much time and effort. It is easy to implement and can be used in any school. Speaking about the necessity of the program, it should be applied to any student, who receives an office discipline referral for the second time. Despite the fact the research conducted by Hawken, MacLeod, and Rawlings (2007) referred to elementary school students, such a program could work among students of the older age if they receive appropriate motivation and encouragement. Students with serious behavioral disorder usually receive numerous office discipline referrals, but it does not stop them. However, such effective and structured feedback can guarantee better involvement in the educational process, which may prevent teachers from office discipline referrals. The authors recommend studying the program in particular disciplines and the reference to age would be a good contribution to this analysis. Moreover, the analysis of other variables, such as academic performance or achievement, can be considered with the reference to this program.
Leedy, Bates, and Safran (2004) also conducted a research aimed at analyzing the effect of positive behavior support intervention. The research was conducted among students in a rural school. The idea to refer to positive behavior support intervention is explained by the recent tendency among teachers of different schools to search for easy and cheap program, which may assist in dealing with behavior change problem. The study provided a deep analysis of the current problem in the USA, where disruptive behavior leads to very unpleasant consequences, which become even dangerous for school staff and other students. The researchers raised a problem of hallways, where students do not have adequate supervision and their actions may lead to undesirable consequences to themselves and other students. After having initiated the current research, Leedy, Bates, and Safran (2004) had a purpose to assess the effectiveness of positive behavior support intervention in a non-classroom setting. Despite the fact that the school included 12 classes of students under the necessary age, only 22 participants completed the necessary assessment and were included in the research results. The research results indicated the increase of positive behavior in the school hallway by 134.9%, which is a good result. The effectiveness of the positive behavior support intervention was proven. The study also demonstrated that the implementation of the positive behavior support program in a couple of grades could lead to positive results among other students, who are not involved into the program. Taking about the possibility of implementing this particular strategy in school, it is important for the staff to be aware of the program and to follow its rules precisely trying to attract as many other students as possible. Overall, positive behavior support intervention is considered as effective program, in support to the study conducted by Hawken, MacLeod, and Rawlings (2007), discussed above.
Studying the same behavioral program, Feuerborn and Chinn (2012) focused on the analysis of the scenarios with the purpose to identify which of the following problems students have, namely social, behavioral, emotional, and academic, and what measures could be done in order to eliminate them. Most of the responses were devoted to social, behavioral, and emotional issues. By analyzing the steps teachers would implement in order to cope with the problem, it is important to see the signs of school-wide positive behavior support program, 79% of respondents referred to. Depending on the teachers’ experience, the close relation to positive behavior support program implementation was seen. Moreover, 67% of respondents stated that the help of family were important in case of misconduct, and it is difficult for the teachers to cope with such issues themselves. 39% of participants stated that office discipline referrals were also important and they confirmed their effectiveness. Direct teaching was offered by only 9% of respondents, while 45% were sure that students with disruptive behavior should be placed in small behavior correctional groups. 22% of respondents were sure that extracurricular activities could be offered as one of the solutions and behavior corrections. 23% of respondents were sure that reward could work effectively since students like when they are distinguished among other mass. Thus, giving some awards can be considered as an effective means for dealing with wrong behavior in class. Unfortunately, only 7% of respondents would try to refer to preventive behavior strategies. Overall, the following research confirmed the previous studies about the main role of a teacher in dealing with problematic behavior of students. The preference of referring to positive behavior support program can also be considered as one more confirmation that this strategy works effectively.
Bradshaw, Koth, Thornton, and Leaf (2009) conducted a group-randomized effectiveness trial with the purpose to observe the impact of positive behavioral interventions and support program on organizational health. The trial lasted for five years and involved 2,596 school staff. The subjects identified “a significant effect of positive behavioral interventions and support on the school’s overall organizational health, resource influence, staff affiliation, and academic emphasis” (Bradshaw, Koth, Thornton, & Leaf, 2009, p. 100). The changes mentioned were positive; therefore, one more research defined a positive influence of the behavioral program of students’ behavior. The improved school climate showed that students are easily influenced by the positive behavioral change, which helps teachers manage the classroom and to control the environment effectively. Positive academic effect was also seen. The best results were achieved after three years of the program implementation. It means that the effect is not immediate and it is necessary to work hard and for some time to see the results.
Paying attention to the fact that modern school tries to apply as much technology as possible, the interference of the information technology into the behavior correction plan is a logical decision. Hung and Lockard (2007) developed a matrix-aided performance system to assist teachers in performing intervention strategies for classroom behavior management. The research results are very useful since they might help make positive behavior support intervention as a part of educational process, which is applied automatically on students’ PCs or mobile phones. The intervention conducted by Hung and Lockard (2007) lasted for four weeks among five teachers with 10-15 years of teaching experience and one junior student. According to the research findings, the matrix’s grid and the hierarchical structure offer a convenient interface and help work in the program easily and without additional trainings. A student received a type of a profile where one can see the effectiveness of the applied strategies and the changes in the behavior if any. The structured and very detailed grid helped put there each detail and made it useful with the reference to the already achieved and developed skills and to those, which should be achieved. The use of the matrix for the behavior management is a “key feature to unite the system functions” (Hung & Lockard, 2007). Therefore, the problem of student behavior can be resolved not only with the help of a special program, but also with the help of the use of information technologies, which are very actively interfered into the life of schools and educational system in general.
Overall, the positive behavior support programs are effective. The implementation of those programs and plans help teachers monitor behavior of students and correct misconduct and disruptive behavior. Students do not receive constant complaints and voice directions of what they have to do. However, they have a strict plan of actions, which they may perceive as a game. Students also like to receive different types of appreciation and gratitude. As a result, they have an opportunity to be awarded with positive feedback at the end of the day, which is a good motivation for them. Some additional positive comments can be received from parents who also see the improvement of students’ behavior. The application of the information technology in the behavior control and correction programs can be considered as an additional motivation for students to take part in the program. Students like different technological devices that help them be involved in a new program faster and with more interest.
Therefore, three means of behavior teaching are analyzed during the conducted literature review. Classroom management is one of the basic means for teaching students behavior. Much research is conducted in the direction of understanding the role of teacher and his/her actions in classroom management aspects. Moreover, the researchers develop a range of strategies and systems, which can be used separately for teaching students appropriate behavior in classroom. Positive and negative feedback can also be considered as a means for helping students improve their behavior. However, the lack of adequate research in this field does not allow teachers use it as a primary method of disruptive behavior correction and misconduct prevention. Positive behavior support intervention is considered to be the most effective means for preventing misconduct and disruptive behavior among students of different age. The studies presented in this literature review analyze positive behavior support intervention from different perspectives and in various situations, and these remain the best means for behavior change. However, it should be noted that students usually get tired fast of the same activities and it is necessary to develop some variations of positive behavior support intervention in order to guarantee its effective implementation in a school for a long time. The application of information technology is offered as one of the ways to improve and change the intervention having made it closer to students and their contemporary interests.
Chapter 3: Research Summary and Conclusions
The literature review is devoted to the problem of students’ success and the ways of achieving it in the modern conditions when students’ disruptive behavior and misconduct appear in the center of the contemporary problem. The current research is important in the scope of the contemporary knowledge since education remains one of the main factors of achieving success. Academic achievements are still highly appreciated, as well as knowledge students receive and further apply in practice. Disruptive behavior and misconduct are the main barriers on the way to receiving quality knowledge during the lessons. The number of cases of behavioral disorders has increased, and since teachers are unable to apply assault, most of them feel loss and absolute helplessness due to the inability to maintain order and discipline in class.
The importance of the research is explained by the inability of teachers to apply one effective means of behavior improvement. The research questions set for the current study are as follows; What are the modern ways to teach students behavior? How can these ways of behavior be implemented? Is there any difference between teaching appropriate behavior of students with disabilities and those without them? These research questions are effectively implemented in the purpose of the study, which is based on the analysis of the literature in the field of the research measured the effectiveness of different means of teaching students behavior and dealing with misconduct and disruptive behavior. This study contributes to the improvement of the effectiveness of American education and helps teachers restructure their educational time and to increase the time for instruction, having compensated unacceptable behavior of students.
The literature review was conducted with the reference to 20 peer-review articles dated from 1996 till 2015. The main focus of the studies used for the review can be divided into three major sections, the articles devoted to the problem of classroom management, feedback, and positive behavioral programs. The analysis of the effectiveness of classroom management as a means of dealing with disruptive behavior should start with the analysis of the environment. The analysis of this question allows concluding that only effective classroom management can help teachers maintain order in class. The strategies required for it are focused on the analysis of the environment for understanding the reasons of inappropriate students’ actions. Choice intervention and inclusion are the strategies that can help teachers disorient students and make them get used to a new environment. However, these are short-term effects, which will require new approaches in the future for achieving the long-term effect. It is possible if teachers understand the reasons for disruptive behavior and can change the environment in order to meet students’ needs. If students’ needs are met, they do not require any additional strategies for conduct change. Students’ behavior directly depends on their satisfaction and dissatisfaction with the environment they have and in which they have some troubles, they are sure to behave in a wrong way.
The analysis of the role of positive and negative feedback in students’ behavior has is analyzed in this research. The research results prove that positive feedback can stimulate students for better performance. At the same time, students can remain ignorant about positive feedback, and in case of violation of the class rules teachers should refer to negative feedback. Overall, the role of feedback in managing students’ behavior is a very complicated issue since it is difficult to understand whether it is a conscious choice to adhere to the feedback and to change behavior or it is a kind of instinct, which has a short-lasting effect. Generally speaking, feedback still remains a very contestable issue in the effectiveness of behavior control and corrections. However, all researchers who have studied this question confirm that both positive and negative feedbacks are important for students and correction of their behavior. Positive and negative feedbacks are inevitable parts of any upbringing process, however, kit cannot be applied without any system. Both a teacher and a student should understand the reasons of any feedback and the consequences one may expect after having received it.
Positive behavioral intervention and support was the final system of dealing with students’ misconduct and correcting disruptive behavior. This particular strategy is based on self-control and a specific structure of actions students have to adhere to. The main idea of positive behavioral support is to use the best examples of the behavior and activities of other people to promote students’ desire to work actively on personal behavior, to improve one’s personal properties and qualities, and to overcome existing shortcomings. This method is considered as an effective one, since much research proves its practical application and the achievement of the desired results.
The importance of the research conducted can be explained by the possibility to find out the most effective means of dealing with students’ misconduct and disruptive behavior. Each of the discussed strategies (class management, feedback, and positive behavior support) is effective depending on the situation. Each of these strategies can be used either separately or in combination, depending on the situation and the problem, which should be resolved. Despite the generally accepted problem of students’ lack of desire to study, the analysis conducted helps to understand that the main reasons of the absence of any desire to study lie in false motivation and the absence of effective strategies for attention capture.
Chapter 4: Discussion
Any behavior has its own function, and students usually show behavior disorders with the purpose to avoid or evade any work, person, or feeling they do not like. Misconduct and disruptive behavior can also be a result of students’ desire to gain access to something, for example, social attention, materials, or sensory stimulation. Students may show undesirable behavior in order to achieve or avoid something that may occur in the classroom environment, but what they would like to avoid. There are considerable disagreement and much discussion around the problem of disruptive behavior, misconduct and discipline in classroom in general. Usually, discipline is defined as the participation of parents, teachers and students in the process of formation of self-control, strong-willed character traits, self-esteem, respect to others, and obedience to the rules. Discipline should be positive and constructive; however, punishment may be applied in the process of upbringing. Classroom management is usually used as a synonym to the maintenance of discipline. Classroom management includes all actions and interactions, planned or spontaneous, a teacher implements in the classroom. This problem has shown a growing interest during recent years.
Classroom management is the main task of the educational process, which is explained by the promotion of the development of any individual in class. Dealing with classroom management and being a leader for students, a teacher should stand in the position of an assistant, the person who contributes to the achievement of students’ goals. It is necessary to make the situation of behavior improvement predictable and understandable for students. It is important to create the conditions when students will have to make choices and decisions. The primary tasks of the teachers when trying to improve disruptive behavior and correct misconduct are to set goals, plan activities, and evaluate the results of those activities. Classroom management is the process of maintaining the business learning environment, causing the desire of students to actively work without violations of discipline. Effective classroom management helps a teacher to run the lessons in accordance with the particular rules. Students have to spend more time on learning. In case of poor class management, a teacher is distracted by students’ comments, and it is hardly possible to start the lesson on time because of the inability to calm down students and to start instruction. One of the most important classroom management tasks is to increase the time of the educational process. Classroom management is used for the development of taking responsibility (accountability in self-management) and creates the rules and procedures of common activities.
Basic functions of classroom management, as concluded from the literature review, are setting objectives and lesson planning, the creation of a lesson structure, the distribution of rights and responsibilities, the establishment of standards, training of self-management, motivation and development of motives for learning, and controlling of educational activities and their results (the creation of the evaluation system, the establishment of standards, the provision of feedback, and the correction of deviations). Teachers should take care of students and their motivation to learning. The interest in academic success will promote effective learning in general and students’ interest during classes. As a result, students will not be interested in misconduct and disruptive behavior and will spend much less time on distractions from lesson. Children feel good at school when they experience success, and students’ success depends much on teachers’ ability to manage classroom. If students believe they can learn, they can build positive relationships with a teacher and to contribute to the life of the class, and as a result, they do not need to waste their energy and time on behavioral disorders. Therefore, the criterion of success classroom management of the teachers is a fulfillment of their main tasks in relation to students.
One of the main problems in dealing with disruptive behavior and preventing misconduct is to make students do what a teacher wants and expects from them. Nowadays, there is a variety of views on the problem of rewards and punishments in classroom. Some teachers and scholars believe that they have to provide much negative feedback in comparison to little positive one. On the contrary, some scholars advise to use more encouraging positive feedback and only in rare cases refer to negative feedback. Some scholars believe that they should only encourage students without providing any negative feedback. There are even those who believe that pure education is the education without any feedback, neither positive nor negative at all. One of the main problems in the modern understanding of feedback as a means to dealing with disruptive behavior and misconduct is that not all teachers can correctly and efficiently use feedback in relation to their students. The main problems are raised by the inability to pay attention to age and individual psychological characteristics of students.
Positive feedback is a very effective tool in managing classroom and improving students’ behavior since each student wants to receive praising. However, negative feedback can also be considered as an effective tool in correcting misconduct. Despite much discussion around this method of education, it should be noted that it also has the right to exist. It does not show indifferent attitude, but rather the ability to see students’ mistakes and the possibility to discuss them. Teachers should learn how to use negative feedback for their own purposes in improvement and behavior correction. It is believed that the students’ disobedience can be stopped and prevented by negative feedback. However, it should be noted that any method of punishment (negative feedback in this case) works better when it is used less frequently. A frequent use of negative feedback leads to ignorance of these words, to the feeling of fear and aggression. Negative feedback has the inspiring influence if it complies with misdemeanor and if it is rarely used. Negative feedback cannot be considered as humiliation since in this case students’ behavior will worsen and a teacher will not be able to achieve a desired effect.
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Maintaining positive behavior is more related to the structure of the lessons and teaching procedures rather than a specific curriculum, intervention, or action, despite the fact that positive behavioral intervention and support program is considered as an intervention, it is in practice an effective structured plan of actions. Dealing with behavior disorders with the help of positive behavior interventions is a focused approach that defines the selection, integration, and implementation of the best academic and behavioral measures to improve academic results and overcome behavioral problems for all students. Positive behavior can be measured and analyzed by means of students’ performance and behavior with the reference to evidence-based support measures and their implementation in school practice.
The implementation of positive behavioral intervention and support program involves some particular strategies and principles of positive behavior. No person can apply a full control over another adult individuality. Teachers should also remember that any disruptive behavior has its reasons and that to cope with it, one needs to understand them. Modern pedagogy has proven that teachers have to restrict from punishment and reduce the number of negative feedback if a positive result is expected. Maintaining desired behavior is a proactive approach: instead of applying penalties to misconduct, teachers should teach students positive behavior systematically and regularly.
The main focus of the positive behavioral strategies should refer to the surrounding of students. It is important to guarantee that the school staff shows the examples how one needs to behave and to accompany students in learning acceptable behavior by providing a safe, interesting and consistent environment, which can guarantee fairness and consistency in teaching appropriate behavior. Th prevention and solution of problems in disruptive behavior and misconduct are the most successful in the conditions of a safe and responsive environment. Maximum effort should be focused on modifying the environment where students study and learn. Working with students with disruptive behavior and misconduct, teachers should remember that their responsibility is to provide logical consequences since it is the best method of working with moderate behavior disorders that frequently occur. Teachers’ reaction works best if it is short and immediate. Students are taught how to control themselves if they understand that any misconduct may lead to negative consequences to them. If students do not follow rules or clear instructions, a consequence is predicted in the positive behavioral strategies, suitable for a particular situation.
Therefore, it is important to see the connection between all the strategies discussed in the literature review. Classroom management is impossible without maintaining discipline and understanding the problems students have in relation to the environment. Positive behavioral intervention and support system cannot work without feedback, which is also a measure that may assist in dealing with misconduct and disruptive behavior. Working with students of different age and academic achievements, teachers should develop personal strategy for teaching students behavior with the reference to the already tested and known strategies. Feedback must be present at class, which is a very important factor in teaching students behavior. However, it is also important to understand when positive and negative feedback should be implemented. The use these three strategies simultaneously may help diversify positive behavioral intervention and support system, when students seem to get tired of it and some change is required to make the system effective again.