Designing Effective Classrooms Cynthia M. Anderson University of Oregon
In a Well-Managed Classroom • Students are actively involved in their work • Students know what is expected of them and are generally successful • There is relatively little wasted time, confusion, or disruption • The climate of the classroom is work-oriented, but relaxed and pleasant
Well-Managed Classrooms Are… • Correlated with positive student outcomes (academic and behavior) and more engagement • Important for preventing more serious problems among at-risk kids • Able to prevent the development of problem behavior • Strong management signals to kids that the class is a safe place to learn. • Rated (by students, teachers, parents, administrators) as having more positive climates.
In Ineffective classroomsWehby, Symons, & Shores (1995) • Less than half of student’s hand raises or correct academic responses were acknowledged by teachers • Less than 2 praise statements per hour • Most academic work consisted of independent seatwork • Inconsistent distribution of teacher attention • Compliance to a command generally resulted in the delivery of another command
Expectations and Rules • Expectations are a foundation for the classroom • Expectations defined • School-wide expectations are foundation for classroom
Expectations and Rules • Expectations are a foundation for the classroom • Derive rules from expectations • Relevant for YOUR classroom • What are problem routines, settings? • What behaviors would you like to see more of?
Your Classroom Vision • What do you want your classroom to look like? • What should it feel like to a class member? • What do you want your students to accomplish? • What do you want to accomplish? • What should a visitor see? • How would you like a visitor to summarize your classroom? Would they say this now?
Expectations and Rules • Expectations are a foundation for the classroom • Derive rules from expectations • Relevant for YOUR classroom • Positively stated & succinct • Target observable behaviors • Posted in public, easily seen place
Expectations and Rules • Develop general classroom rules • Develop rules for problematic routines Rules for Routines What is the expected behavior? What is the signal/cue for the expected behavior? How do you clean up? What do you do during group work? What do you do when the bell rings? What do you do when you enter the room? How do you get help?
Elementary Example Lining Up • Neatly place books and materials in your desk. • Sit quietly when you hear the “quiet” signal. • Quietly stand up when your name (or row) is called • Push your chair under your desk • Quietly walk to the line • Stand with hands at your sides, facing forward,
Secondary Examples: Routines Class Discussion • Prepare for discussion by reading the required assignment in advance. • Wait until the other person is finished speaking before your talk. • Stay on topic. • Respect others’ opinions and contributions: Use appropriate expressions of disagreement.
Expectations and Rules • Linked to school-wide program • Positively stated & succinct (3-5) • Observable behaviors • Posted in public, easily seen place • Enforced consistently Rules & routines Provide Structure
Action Planning • What are your classroom rules? • Do 80% of students consistently follow rules without reminders or prompts? • Are there other problems occurring in your room? • Consider: • Are your rules linked to the Tier I school intervention? • Do your rules reflect common discipline problems? • Do all students know and understand your rules and consequences? • Are your rules clearly stated, positively worded, and few in number? • What changes could you make to your rules?
Teaching Expected Behavior • Build off School-wide expectations • When to teach • Beginning of year • Before and after natural breaks • When the data suggest teaching is needed • For individual students…after rule violations • How to teach…. Teaching Matrix
Evaluate effects of instruction • Collect data • Are rules being followed? • If not ask.. • who is making them? • where are the errors occurring? • what kind of errors are being made? • when are they being made? • Summarize data (look for patterns) • Use data to make decisions
Acknowledgement Tips • Simple systems are best • High frequency of acknowledgement is key • Acknowledgement contingent on behavior • Avoid threats and response cost • Avoid removing opportunity for acknowledgement
Acknowledgement Systems • Whole class systems • Small-group systems • Individual student systems
Whole-Class Acknowledgement • Best for…. • Discrete activities • Situations when each instance of correct behavior can be acknowledged • Embed within other systems • Examples Work completion Attendance Timely transitions Limit attention to peers
Small Group Acknowledgement • General • Students divided into teams • Points allocated based on student behavior when game is in effect • Rewards delivered periodically (end of day, end of week) based on points earned The Good Behavior Game
Rationale for use • Large body of empirical support • Easily modified for • Different class sizes • Age groups • Ability levels • Activities • Daily variations in the classroom
Using TGBG • When will TGBG be used? • Times when all students are expected to meet established behavioral expectations • Times that are difficult in your room • What behaviors will you target? • Define 1-3 appropriate behaviors and/or 1-3 inappropriate behaviors
TGBG Independent Work
Hurray! Oops. • Respectful • Safe • Responsible • Out of seat • Disruptive • Talking out
TGBG Group Work
GOs STOPs • Respectful • Safe • Responsible • Out of seat • Disruptive • Talking out
Using TGBG • When will TGBG be used? • What behaviors will you target? • What will you use for rewards and what is the schedule?
Sample Rewards • Stickers • Line up first • Break/special activity • Quiet break at end of day • Points toward large reward
Using TGBG • When will TGBG be used? • What behaviors will you target? • What will you use for rewards and what is the schedule? • Begin with n points—lose points for rule violations • Begin with 0 points—earn points for rule following • Combination
Using TGBG • When will TGBG be used? • What behaviors will you target? • What will you use for rewards and what is the schedule? • Team with most (fewest) points wins • Everyone “over the bar” wins
Using TGBG • When will TGBG be used? • What behaviors will you target? • What will you use for rewards and what is the schedule? • Introduce game to your class • Use the game
TGBG: When Things Go Wrong • Sabotage • Consider forming separate team • It used to work but now it doesn’t • Consistent use? • Verbal arguments about contingencies? • Considerations • Random reinforcers and criteria • Have someone observe your implementation to problem solve • One student ruins it for the rest
Acknowledgement Systems • Whole class systems • Small-group systems • Individual student systems • Acknowledgement contingent only on that student’s behavior • Examples
Individual Student Systems • Acknowledgement contingent on individual student behavior • Examples • Race car • Red light • Card system • Advantages • Allows system to be tailored for specific students • Limitations • Less opportunity for positive peer influence • Difficult to be consistent
Individual Student Systems Considerations • If you use a “response cost” be sure students can earn positives as well • Is it working—are the same students doing well and doing poorly each day? • Watch out for “shaming” as a strategy • Avoid drawing attention to negative behavior
This is the second time you have poked Jason, go flip your card. • I didn’t poke him, I just touched him. • It looked like a poke to me, go flip your card. • You are SO unfair! What about Bernie? She is messing with Lia’s hair! • Right now I am talking to you, go flip your card. • Mumbles under breath • Tonya, please go flip your card now or you will need to go to the principal • Slowly gets up, stomps to front of room in exaggerated manner and turns card • I don’t care about your cards anyway!
Common Strategies • Verbal reprimand • Time out • Demerit or fine • Detention • Writing assignment • Deprivation of some reward/response cost • Office referral
When They Don’t Work • Intervention is in place without the… • Systems • For defining and teaching expectations and rules • For responding to errors • For acknowledging appropriate behavior • Data • Strategies for monitoring student behavior • Consequence doesn’t match function
Why do we behave? Modeling? Accident?Instinct? Why Do we keep behaving? IT WORKS! C Anderson U Oregon March 2010
Effective Consequences for Misbehavior Require a System • Applied consistently • Immediate feedback • Pre-determined plan for major, minor, repeat violations • Linked to context Requires a plan developed BEFORE the problem occurs for Major, minor, and repeated problems
Strategies: Tips for Teachers • Avoid stopping lesson to respond to student misbehavior • Use immediate consequences when feasible • Pick your battles But.....
Is Your ClassroomManagement SystemWorking? How Would you Know?
Are My Changes Making a Difference? • Collect “baseline” data • Implement new program with fidelity • Compare baseline performance to intervention outcomes