Date
29 November 2021

Support positive behaviour​

Suggestion for implementing the strategy ‘​Support self-regulation and positive behaviour ’

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Consider multiple approaches

Consider multiple approaches

Build up a range of approaches to draw from when supporting positive behaviour.
  • Create opportunities for students to take the lead using their strengths and interests.
  • Help students to develop a strong sense of identity and be knowledgeable about their specific learning needs and abilities.
  • Consistently teach and reinforce classroom and playground rules.
  • Take opportunities to give specific positive feedback about attempted tasks that meet achievement goals.
  • Consider short term contracts to achieve learning goals and task expectations. Negotiate these with the student.
  • Give choice within set alternatives, starting with one out of two possible choices.
  • Develop cues individually with the student that will signal such things as when they need to refocus or take a break from a task or situation.
  • Teach organisation skills.
  • Teach coping skills.
  • Teach self-management skills, including alternative ways to achieve goals, managing anger, problem-solving, asking for help, and finding a safe place or person.

Anticipating difficult times

Anticipating difficult times

Encourage "on task" behaviour through clear routines and systems:
  • Recognise, remove, or minimise things that can cause distress.
  • Give clear and consistent instructions and approaches to work.
  • Give reminders about self-management strategies, such as taking a break.
  • Reduce negative behaviour by distracting the student or re-engaging them in another activity.
  • Check whether medication may be influencing behaviour (it may, for example, have worn off).
  • Learn to recognise signs that a student’s behaviour is escalating, use verbal messages or cues to help calm them, and alternative calming activities.
  • Ignore minor examples of poor behaviour, especially if the student is following instructions.
  • Stand in close proximity to the student as a way of moderating off-task activities.

Managing difficult times

Managing difficult times

Respond with non-aversive techniques that help students to manage their actions until they can be more receptive.

1: Make changes around the things that set off such reactions

  • Remove objects that may distract the student.
  • Change the time, location, or duration of activities if these factors are viewed as influencing difficult behaviour.
  • Redirect the student to another activity they enjoy.
  • Remove unnecessary demands or requests.
  • Change where the student sits.
  • If the student is taking medication, check that it has been given/taken when it is required.

 2: Interrupt the build-up

  • Move closer or move away as appropriate, stand side on rather than face-on.
  • Give instructions that the student is more likely to follow.
  • Remind them of any self-management strategies they know.
  • Cue them to take a break or to monitor and recognise the beginning of a build-up.
  • Facilitate relaxation.
  • If the student is taking medication, check (in private) if medication was taken.

Useful resources

Useful resources

Website

Interim response fund (IRF)

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Visit website

Website

Students with learning support needs

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Visit website

Next steps

More suggestions for implementing the strategy “​Support self-regulation and positive behaviour ”:

Return to the guide “ADHD and learning”

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