Topic Progress:
Class of middle school students paying attention to teacher at the board.  Except for one young boy looking backward and disinterested.

Not all student misbehavior requires elaborate response strategies. Sometimes students will respond quickly to a teacher action to minimize the behavior before it gets out of hand and requires more extensive intervention. Certain behaviors surface spontaneously during a lesson or activity and are minimally disruptive, such as blurting out, and can be addressed in the classroom with little to no time lost from instruction.

While there are many strategies for providing corrective consequences for misbehavior, a list of indirect and direct instructionally-based strategies are suggested. Indirect strategies are actions to minimize the misbehavior before it gets out of hand and requires more extensive intervention. Indirect strategies are unobtrusive and carried out quickly during instruction.

Direct correction strategies are suggested for inappropriate behaviors that continue or do not change after indirect strategies have been used. When implementing these direct strategies, interact with students using the language from the matrix. Interact privately and match your response with the frequency and severity of the behavior.

It is also important to increase teaching opportunities and praise students’ efforts to follow the established rules. A range of indirect and direct strategies form a continuum of strategies for staff to use to discourage inappropriate behavior.  All responses to behavior errors will be more effective when, after pausing for the student to demonstrate the desired behavior, teachers remember to provide positive specific feedback.

Strategies to address behavior errors should be done privately and with instructional tone and demeanor. Use the strategy that is least intrusive for correcting the behavior. It is also important to remember that when behavior errors occur, increased teaching and increased feedback should also occur.