There you are with your clean desk, sharpened pencils, empty inbox of emails and you think you are all set to rock this school year as the newly designated Behavior Coordinator for your campus. Most of you are probably an Assistant Principal too, and grappling with all the responsibilities that come with that job. But you’re not worried, you got this! Your plan is to handle each issue right as you get it, so you don’t get behind in your paperwork. You have the code of conduct and your discipline matrix on the corner of your desk to grab at a moment’s notice. Now, you just need to help your PBIS team present the expectations, common area rules, reward system, and discipline system to the students and start building relationships with the 1500 kiddos in your school.
You’ve likely heard about LSSPs before, but maybe aren’t 100% what they are. LSSP stands for Licensed Specialists in School Psychology, and they’re one of the foundations to a functional and healthy school.
As LSSPs at Region 13, we conduct evaluations (and often reevaluations) to determine if your students are eligible for, or can continue in, special education services, academic and behavior intervention plans, and counseling as a related service. We also help assess disabilities that are listed under IDEA’s 13 categories, with the exception of visual impairment, hearing impairment, and speech or language impairment.
Bullying is all around us. It’s easy to do. A bully approaches someone else and pressures them to do something they don’t want to do, or never wanted to do in the first place. Bullies can tease, hurt, or even torment other students. You might have missed it though, because what constitutes bullying can be tricky.
Teamwork is important. We all do better work when we’ve got a great team supporting us. As we’ve mentioned before, Positive Behavior Interventions and Support, or PBIS, involves the whole campus. To successfully implement PBIS on your campus, you’re going to need a stellar team. So, what does a PBIS team look like?
To build an ideal PBIS team, it’s important to represent all aspects of your community. Think about who represents your school and invite them into the PBIS Team. Teachers, both general and special education, interventionists, elective teachers, parents, office staff, cafeteria works, maintenance workers; all are part of your campus staff and all can have a strong voice on your PBIS Team.
There’s an unfortunate reality about teaching that you’ll eventually comes across: you’ll eventually end up angry at one of your students or your students will be angry or aggressive towards you. It’s hard to know how to manage aggression we might have towards students who aren’t behaving in class. We might feel ridiculed, disrespected, not listened to, or more. As Social Emotional Learning teaches us, our emotions don’t exist in a vacuum. One bad day at home or a bad week outside of school can be compounded when a student acts up, causing us to lash out or turn to aggressive behavior.
As a teacher, you’ve likely encountered your fair share of difficult students. Students have all sorts of different behaviors and personalities. Some are aggressive, others are reserved, some never follow rules, while others listen to everything. Just the same, you’ve likely come across some tough kids.
Your tough kids are students in your class that frequently misbehave or don’t comply. Most, if not all, of your students won’t comply or will misbehave at some point in time, but tough kids are a bit different. They’re students that regularly don’t comply with what you’re asking them to do, and often get angry, hostile, or worse in the situation.
One of the hardest things you’ll deal with as a teacher is getting compliance from your students. Students have different energy levels, backgrounds, and personalities and all of those will come into conflict with your behavior compliance efforts.
Here are just a few compliance strategies you can use in your classroom. These strategies might seem trivial and insignificant, but small tweaks can have big changes.
Restorative circles are strategies you can use in your classrooms to develop relationships, build communities, and respond to conflicts and problems that arise. With restorative circles, you give everyone an equal opportunity to speak, and be listened to.
When you’re building your restorative circles, the basic structure is easy to learn. Gather everyone around in a circle, and follow the guidelines of whatever circle type you’re using!
If you’ve been in education for any amount of time, you’ve likely heard the words “Social Emotional Learning” before. It’s not a new concept, Social Emotional Learning (or SEL for short), has been around for years, but has just recently started to gain respect, attention, and importance in the world of education.
SEL, as defined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional, Learning is “the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”
That’s a mouthful, but it contains a lot of really useful information. In a nutshell, SEL is all about understanding how people grow and learn socially and emotionally by looking at the daily interactions and experiences that influence their emotions, behavior, and thereby affect their choices.
Some of you might know what Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports is, it’s been around for around twenty years now and its even part of the law. However, maybe you’re new to education, or maybe you’ve been implementing PBIS your whole life but never really knew what it was called.
Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support, or as abbreviated, PBIS, is defined as a “positive and proactive system-level approach that enables schools to effectively and efficiently support student and staff behavior.” Woah, that’s a bit of a mouthful, so what does that mean exactly?