I love when I get to go back to the same classes, especially the class I was in today. I've been in for this particular teacher two or three times now, and every time it was a challenge. She has a few "tough cookies" and I struggled to keep their behaviour in check. One student in particular tends to take over the show, so I had reflected on some ideas specifically to target his behaviour. However, on my last visit to the class, he was away. I figured my strategies were unnecessary and decided to proceed without them. Big mistake! With "Joey" (fake name)out of the picture, several other students decided to make up for his absence! Should have went ahead with my original plan, regardless of which students were there!

So, that's what I did today. I implemented my "Amazing Students" strategy (see my previous post about rewards, or browse the photos on my experience page) and hoped it would provide the right kind of motivation for those challenging students, as well as give the rest of the class a chance to earn some recognition. It worked great! Mind you, there was now an EA in the room, a behaviour plan in place, and more familiarity with myself that contributed to the improved behaviour, but I can still take some credit. A simple reminder about my chart was enough to keep those "tough cookies" on task and lots of praise encouraged them to earn a spot for their name...and they did. When I gave my marker to one of the difficult students, she seemed stunned to be recognized for doing a good job. It made me feel great to see a big smile slowly spread across her face as she took the marker from my hand.

I learned my lesson: always put those tried and true strategies in place, even when they seem unnecessary. Every kid likes to be recognized for doing a good job, and using a strategy like my chart is a great way to give kids a quiet pat on the back...figuratively of course!

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