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Worries About Behaviour Management


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Hi all,

 

I wondered if anyone out there had any advice for me!!

 

On my 2nd year placement from university, I had an awful teaching placement in a year 1 class where I was put on ‘ cause for concern’ by the teacher because according to her, my behaviour management was not up to scratch. !! I felt incredibly unsupported by her throughout the placement and whenever I asked for advice, she would say it was up to me to think of what works for me or give me things to try that worked for her and didn’t seem to for me. I was observed by everyone else, my uni tutor, the head, other teachers etc who couldn't see any problems and said I was doing brilliantly for a 2nd year student. They provided my evidence that allowed me to pass the placement thankfully.

 

Since then, both my 3rd and 4th year placements have been very successful and I was praised on both placements for my behaviour management techniques.

 

However, that 2nd year placement is frequently on my mind and I worry about it. I spent the whole of my 4th year placement (that I’ve just passed) worrying that I might be failed on behaviour management as the class was quite challenging but I was always praised my behaviour management techniques etc and got a brilliant report etc from the school.

 

Even though it was 2 years ago, that 2nd year placement has left me with some sort of complex. My confidence took such an awful knock, I’ve never been able to build it back up properly again and constantly feel like I am not good enough.

 

Any tips on how I can move on from it?

 

Any advice etc would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks so much,

Helen

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I not sure that I can really help as I work in a day nursery, I just wanted to say that I am sure you are doing fine. I would just say that with behaviour management you just need to be consistant and show the children that you are listening to them, I hope that once you are in a setting and have built up a relationship with the children this will help your confidence.

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Welcome Helen and what a bad experience for you on your 2nd placement. You should see this as a fault of the teacher and not you given that everyonbe else praised you and that your subsequent placements have been so succeful and many congratulations on passing your final placement!

 

You don't say what techniques you use for behaviour management and I know there are a variety out there. The important thing is to be consistent and fair to let the children know what you expect and to keep to this.

 

I personally work to develop children's intrinsic values and having seen how well the Conflict Resolution programme of High/Scope works I use this at all time. There are always times when I lose it and it is important to say that also to children but my advice would be to keep remembering all the good times and if necessary write them down in a book and refer to them as much as you can.

 

Lorna

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What a terrible shame that this teacher didn't find it in her to help and support you! Sometimes you can't please everyone in life, but that isn't your fault and you can't carry on beating yourself up about it. At various times I have been 'knocked down' by small minded people and it really does undermine your confidence though, doesn't it. I can understand why you don't want to find yourself in that situation again.

 

As the others have said, consistency and fairness is all important. Plus, if there are sanctions to unwanted behaviour then you must follow through on it every time. I have seen staff who have their 'favourites' and let those children get away with flaunting basic rules that other 'less favourable' children don't. :o This is so unfair and the children know it! I have also seen some staff who are frightened to tackle some children over their behaviour as they know the child in question can be 'difficult' and they may end up with a battle on their hands. This is where it's necessary to know what behaviour is a must, and what isn't so important. Otherwise you end up having a huge battle over a trivial matter, and at the end of it you wonder why on earth you decided to take a stand on it!

 

Also make sure that the children know what the 'rules' are! It sounds obvious but sometimes the adults have an expectation that the children will somehow know without having it spelled out for them. It helps if you have a set of class golden rules or something which are discussed regularly, as you can refer to these when explaining to a child why the behaviour they are displaying is unacceptable. Always give out a warning or two before going in heavy handed as well, so that the child has a chance to change the behaviour. I knew someone who seemed to suddenly 'snap' and just go and either remove a toy or remove children from their play, without any warning or explanation as to why. The children were always bewildered and of course they couldn't learn how to modify their play to stop this from happening another time. :(

 

You sound like your a wonderfully reflective practitioner Helen, I'm sure you'll make a super teacher. Good luck. xD

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Hi and welcome Helen.

 

I have experienced what you describe as a teaching student, but that was many years ago and it sounds as if your teacher did not enjoy having a student in her class with "her" children. That was not your fault and you have been successful since. There is no reason why you can not be successful again.

 

I also know how difficult it can be to put some of these things behind you, just as you think you have laid the ghost, something upsets the equilibrium and it comes back to haunt you. But you must concentrate on what you do you well and it doesnt sound from what you say as if behaviour management is a particular issue for you although there will always be the odd children or class who will challenge you in some way.

 

It is a much different experience being the teacher and having your class than being the teacher, student or otherwise, with someone else's and the children will pick up and play up if they sense that you lack confidence in any way.

 

I have found the Bill Rodgers behaviour books very useful to put things in perspective and the other behaviour guru, Sue Cowley has just written an article here for us. Have you found that? Scholastic also have a series of books that you might find useful for a quick pick up, written by Sue Cowley.

 

If you can continue to be reflective in your practise you will make a great teacher, dont let this get you down. Good luck.

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Hi Helen

 

Welcome to the forum!

 

One thing I have learned is that we early years practitioners beat ourselves up enormously about negative experiences. You obviously are an excellent practitioner as others who have observed you have told you. As others have said, I agree that the reaction of that particular teacher reveals more about her than about your supposed inability. I think she failed you as a mentor and that is her problem.

 

In my view, no experience is a waste of time - we can learn from positive role models and also from negative ones. Just like the children with whom we work, learning is not something that you switch on and off, it is a continuum, so I suggest that you remember how you felt when you had this negative experience and bear it in mind when you have students on placement with you in the future. I am sure that you will be a better mentor than some due to your experiences. For now, I suggest you put it behind you and concentrate on all the wonderful feedback you received from everyone else, because you're worth it!

 

Good luck, Helen!

 

Lesley :o

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I think if you scratch the surface, every teacher who has probably had a similar experience somewhere in their career. I know I did in my probationary year where I was left to manage team teaching (not) in a space where I had no room to call my own, shared with the DHT and senior teacher for KS1. I nearly quit teaching at that point, but instead I moved schools and found so much support at my next school I stayed for 12 years only leaving to get a permanent DHT post (I was acting DHT by then).

 

I would defy anyone to say they don't have a little sense of "what if I can't manage them" with any class they are about to meet!!!!

 

It's not about what happened, it's about how you learn and move on from it. You will be a fabulous person to mentor students because you know first hand how it feels to be let down in that situation!!

 

The past is gone and so is she - she was one small person in a sea of successful outcomes! I've had cohorts I loathed being with and cohorts I loved being with. The skill is to be professional, fair and equal, consistent and positive so you can do your job as well as you can. You've years of success to look forward to!!

 

Cx

Edited by catma
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Firstly, I agree that the teacher was in the wrong being totally unsupportive etc... but I also believe that the experiences we've had particularly the bad ones make us stronger. As you have said that you have been given a lot of praise for your behaviour management and maybe that experience helped you develop ways that work for you even if this did occur through a lack of professionalism by the teacher. I had a tough 3rd year placement where 50% of the class were special needs with several on behaviour plans, ADHD etc... Now the teacher I worked with was great but I was thrown into the whole class teaching on my second day at the school. It was hard work and there were days when I felt like I was only just in charge but it was the making of me. I was left on my own a lot as my teacher had lots of other responsibilities and I guess she must have trusted me! I do remember another teacher coming in telling the children off for being too noisy and me feeling really annoyed as I felt she'd undermined me!

 

My 4th year placement was a dream in comparison and I realised it had made me stronger and ready to take on my own class. Think about what it taught you and how far you've come since. You have had lots of praise from everyone else and that's the important thing. You will continue it learn and grow as a teacher when you have your own class. Don't let one teacher spoil things for you!

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I agree that most people have experienced something like this. What goes around comes around-maybe one day you'll be her head teacher or running a course that she is on!!

 

There is a great book by Bill Rodgers called 'Cracking the hard class'. Although not specifically aimed at this age group it is very readable and really explores the whole idea of 'managing behaviour' generally. Read it, inwardly digest it, try out some of the ideas and you will be ready for any behaviour incident as well as having a raft of strategies that will help build up children's self-esteem!

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There is a great book by Bill Rodgers called 'Cracking the hard class'. Although not specifically aimed at this age group it is very readable and really explores the whole idea of 'managing behaviour' generally. Read it, inwardly digest it, try out some of the ideas and you will be ready for any behaviour incident as well as having a raft of strategies that will help build up children's self-esteem!

 

Even better for this age group also a Bill Rogers book is "Behaviour Management with Young Children" A very easy to read pick and run with it book. When I was having a hard time with a child a few months a go it gave me a message in about 5 mins and worked wonders. It boosted my self esteem straight away!

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Hi Helen, welcome and just to repeat what others have said putit behind it was her issue and we all listen to the negative and put o positive to one side so take the positive and listen to it and believe in yourself and poo poo to the mean teacherx x x x

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Hi Helen, welcome to the forum!

 

Great posts already and I'd agree with everything said. It's human nature that we forget all the positives and dwell on the negatives :o Please read your post again and remember all the lovely things you were told on that and other placements and try to put it behind you.

 

Easier said than done, and these things have a way of creeping back into our minds when we're tired and defenses are low - end of term, Christmas looming... sound familiar!?

 

Perhaps a visible "plus and minus" list to remind you in your low moments - it worked for me!!!

 

Nona

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Hi Helen and thanks for your honesty and for sharing. Part of the healing of a nasty experience like you have had is to talk about it and the feelings around it. You sound really switched on and are able to share. I hope you find someone in your new job who you can chat to and lucky children to have such a caring and reflective teacher such as you.

 

Redbas :o

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Hello there

 

I think that a few years from now, you should put yourself forward to be a mentor yourself. You are obviously a reflective teacher and your experience will help you empathise with students. My first mentor almost drove me out of teaching - tears after school every day. Try to accept praise though. Its too easy to focus on the negative aspects of your teaching and not sit back and think - actually that was rather good........

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I have found the Bill Rodgers behaviour books very useful to put things in perspective and the other behaviour guru, Sue Cowley has just written an article here for us. Have you found that? Scholastic also have a series of books that you might find useful for a quick pick up, written by Sue Cowley.

 

Here is the link to the Sue Cowley article

 

The others have said it all really but just to say I makes me sad to think how we can let one person's comments doubt our own abilities.....you know you can do it Helen, don't let this bother you any more. You have to take these things and use them positively to make you better and prove to yourself that this teacher was wrong and thoughtless.

 

Good luck and welcome to the forum.

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Thank-you to everyone for all your lovely replies, they've had me in tears ( but in a good way :o )

 

Thank-you for the book suggestions and the link. :)

 

Thanks for making me feel better about myself and helping me to see that maybe I am not rubbish after all!

 

Helen x

Edited by helenhunt
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Thank-you to everyone for all your lovely replies, they've had me in tears ( but in a good way :o )

 

Thank-you for the book suggestions and the link. :)

 

Thanks for making me feel better about myself and helping me to see that maybe I am not rubbish after all!

 

Helen x

 

Tears eh, don't worry as I am getting older I cry at just about everything.....my family sit and take the mickey when I am crying over stupid things on the telly.

 

As for helping you, that's possibly what we do best on the forum. Most of us have had a similar experience or feelings and are still here to tell the tale so remember 'What doesn't kill you makes you stronger'

 

Have a great Christmas and go back in January and continue to knock their socks off xD

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi!

As someone who had a very similar experience - as it seems most have - I found that the easiest thing to do was to 'blag it' a little. When I acted confidently and pretended like I knew what I was doing - I often don't - people just believed me, the children included!

Have fun!

:D

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As I've just read through all the posts above I've been thinking that it may be that the teacher who gave the 'cause for concern' rating may have seen what your true potential and talent and felt rather threatened by you.... hmm, if she was a good teacher herself she wouldn't have given you that rating at all but handled your placement in a much more positive way wouldn't she, so maybe I'm on the right track?

 

I hope this helps and that you can turn what you have previously perceived as a 'negative' into a 'positive'. A good way to start your new year!

 

As someone has already mentioned, you sound like reflective practitioner and a great teacher... don't let one person's 'personal' view hold you back - please?

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