Strategies the Teaching Assistant Might Use to Encourage Positive Behaviour in the Classroom.
All schools implement ‘Rules’ which are non-negotiable and relate to health and safety, bullying, drugs, and aggressive behaviour. These rules are illustrated around the school to act as a reminder and demonstrate the type of behaviour expected from them. My school has a 5 step disciplinary policy to discourage bad behaviour. The neccessity for rules and sanctions needs to be communicated to students in order to keep them safe from harm as well encouraging positive behaviour. T. A’s should also set clear rules and boundaries in the classroom that will support positive behaviour from the begining.
As TA’s are role models, they must always express positive body and verbal language and support classroom rules. TA’s should be confident, assertive and professional so that children in turn become self confident and express positive behaviour. As stated by Rogers, 2006, p52, ‘When a teacher’s manner, body language, posture and communication appear confident and authoritative, and when such confidence is further maintained in both teaching and management , students are likey to cooperate with the teachers leadership. Taking photographs of children working respectfully and displaying them in the classroom also promotes good behaviour in the classroom. Even encouraging and praising children with low self esteem to lead teams or groups during P. E will build positive behaviour, personality and character.
T. A’s should always verbally praise a child’s positive behaviour and contribution to the classroom as well as providing stickers and creative wall charts to illustrate their success.Rewards such as trophies, certificates and letters to parents about their child’s achievements in school also go a long way in promoting positive behaviour in a child . T. A’s should always lead by example. They should express encouraging words, be approachable, understanding and show empathy in order to stimulate and encourage positive behaviour.
They need to be observant, pro-active and take the initative so that they can help and encourage not only the shy, quiet ; withdrawn children to talk and participate in the classroom but also help encourage ‘troublesome children’.This way all children in the classroom are included making them feel valued and respected. Often, children with poor language and communication skills become frustrated and express a lack of interest in school because they are not understood. T. A’s therefore need to be understanding, be supportive and give guidance and advice.
Medical conditions such as sight and hearing loss lso cause communication difficulities and often trigger aggressive behaviour, as pupils are not able to understand what is going on around them or able to participate in conversation. Hence, T. A’s need to speak in simple language clearly and slowly and give pupils time to express themselves. They should discuss concerns with the class teacher /SENCO who will refer as neccessary and know school policies and procedures to follow.Bibliography B. Rogers, ‘Classroom Behaviour’, Paul Chapman Publishing, 2006.