One of the greatest challenges faced by teachers in schools these days is, tackling various behaviours of child. To lead the behaviour of a child and to enhance their good behaviours, Behaviour management techniques should be used timely.
Positive reinforcement is most effective way of motivating learners. For instance, Piya, a girl of class 2 makes it a point to throw thrash in the dustbin after recess. Since, she learnt it in class about keeping surrounding clean. The teacher then praises Piya in front of class for her good behaviour and makes her cleanliness monitor of the class. Therefore praising Piya, helped in strengthening the skill and making other children realise that good behaviour leads to better consequences.
Negative reinforcement, is generally used to manage problem behaviour of the child by taking away the desired item so as to decrease such responses in future. For instance, Akhil a class 9 boy got his mobile phone to classroom. This led to disturbing the class during lectures and the teacher got to know about it. Teacher confiscated his phone and gave him after a week. This latter helped in giving the whole class a message that any behaviour like this would lead to an intense response.
Opportunities when missed or ignored by the authorities to reinforce the child may lead to extinction of that particular behaviour. It is definitely important for the authority to discriminate among which behaviour should be ignored and which shouldn’t be. For instance, let’s reconsider Piyas example of picking up the thrash from classroom after the recess is over, if teacher wouldn’t have got her good behaviour in notice this would have led to extinction of her good behaviour. Therefore it was of utmost importance to highlight good behaviour in front of the class.
On the other hand, Tiya a 6 year old girl interrupted the teacher twice during a lesson in classroom. Teacher did not respond and kept going, this ignorance from teachers end led to extinction of Tiyas negative behaviour.
Punishment in behaviour modification is change that takes place in surroundings of child due to their response, with an intention that this particular response shouldn’t be repeated.
For instance, Sam a class 3 boy spat on the bench of his classroom after he fought with his classmate. To his behaviour the class teacher made Sam wait after school to clean all desks and benches.
Timeout can be other way of stopping an unwanted behaviour, wherein the child can be asked to stand out of the group if the rule is not being followed. For instance, In a group activity the teacher specified no chorus answers will be entertained while announcing rules. Sasha a child in group kept breaking this rule and impulsively blurted known answers. Teacher then asked her to leave the group and stand out until game was over.
Behaviour Management at Home
It’s easy for children to throw tantrums at home. Home is their kingdom. They know it’s their territory. Taking parents and other family members for granted is but obvious. Practising re enforcements consistently will only mould children into well behaved gentlemen and ladies.
For instance, if your child finishes bath on time or keep toys in place, thena hug or a pat on back for encouragement is well deserved.
At the same time it is important to present an unpleasant reaction to a problematic behaviour. The child should be discouraged to behave in negative manners by giving some form of punishment. For instance, the child is not allowed to watch television as he/she has disobeyed particular instructions given by the parents.
Talk to the child clearly about behaviour you expect and let them know the behaviours that are not right. Prepare a daily routine and set a time limit for daily tasks.
Home is the best environment where a parent can develop a good authority on the child by maintaining a ‘’right is right’’ ‘’wrong is wrong’’ for everybody approach. Having a uniform rule in family helps the child to understand the importance of discipline. E.g. no use of mobile phones during dinner or lunch rule should be followed by the child as well as by the adults of the family too. Do not forget that children are good imitators.
Behaviour Management at Public places
Parents face a big trouble if child is unmanageable at public places. It is a moment of disgust for some, when their kids disobey or misbehave in front of others. Apart from their negative behaviour other factor such as safety is a major concern of parents.
To not take them out and make them stay at home may hamper their socialization skills. Therefore, using certain behaviour management techniques may help parents in developing good behaviour at public places in their child. Also, making child understand about various consequences in prior to their response can help in getting desired behaviour.
Positive reinforcements should be used to escalate good behaviours timely by the parent, while at public place. Whereas, negative reinforcements should be avoided at public places. Bossiness of parent may lead to undesired behaviour in child. Therefore it is important to be polite and highlight a lot of good acts of child when outside.
Telling what is expected is usually of great help, kids with sustenance issues may show a lot of restlessness at public places. Telling dos and don’ts before taking them out generally escalates desired behaviour.
Harsheen Kaur Kochhar & Shikha Karwa: M.A. Counselling Psychologist
Harsheen Kaur Kochhar & Shikha Karwa are Counselling Psychologist and Play Therapist at Child Rehabilitation Centre. They pursued her Masters in Psychology from SNDT University and are working in the field of child development since past 2 years.
They have been working with kids having behavioural difficulties and have empowered parents by educating them with appropriate behaviour management techniques.
They strongly believe, kids with developmental disorders should get integrated into regular schools by empowering the teachers with appropriate knowledge and tools.