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Behaviour Management In Reception


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Afternoon all,

 

wondered if I could ask how you manage behaviour in Reception. I was thinking of using some sort of system, e.g. 4 weather symbols with their name on a peg. something like:

 

 

Rainbow = if you are on the rainbow at the end of the day you get a sticker and a 'point' in a book

 

sun = everyone starts on the sun every morning

 

raincloud = done something unacceptable after a warning

 

thunder and lightening = Unacceptable behaviour, speak to their parents at the end of the day

 

though am not sure if this is too much for the children, or whether it may give them a complex about weather!!!

 

or I was thinking of using a chart with all their names on and giving them a 'point' for good behaviour ( linked to our golden rules) though I am not sure how it would work with consequences if it is just a positive points system.

 

I have a very large class (33) so want to have something firmly in place from day one :)

 

Any advice greatly appreciated! :o

Edited by helenhunt
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Hi, why do you have 33 children? Hope you are well supported.

 

I personally wouldnt go with the weather symbols as I think it could be misleading. I have used a smiley and a sad face which I turned around according to how the group dynamics made me feel--which worked well without singling anyone in particular out. Children seemed to understand that too and tried really hard to keep me happy!

 

If you are using visual symbols, which you would need to do then you do need to make sure that they done become muddled with something else. Also make sure that whatever you put in to place is manageable for you as you have got to maintain it.

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My EYPS came up witha lovely idea last term and we had a "tree of kindness" to encourage good sharing and general behaviour. The children were given a small paper cut out apple with their name and details of their good behaviour which was then put onto the tree of kindness at carpet time.. worked very well and the parents could see what we were trying to achieve too (always a bonus!)

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Wow 33! How have you ended up with so many in a reception class?

 

I've never used the weather system myself but I have seen it used in other places where the children really respond to it, although they were year one upwards. I don't think you need to worry about it giving them a complex about the weather though, even young children understand the purpose of signs and symbols.

 

The group thing with the smiley and happy face is good, especially if you have an attention seeking behaviour problem where the child feels that getting his/her name on the storm is a bit of a status symbol meaning they are getting noticed. On the other hand if you have a couple of children who disrupt things regularly thus making you 'sad', it's pretty hard on the other children to see that as a group they are always making you use the sad face.

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Afternoon all,

 

wondered if I could ask how you manage behaviour in Reception. I was thinking of using some sort of system, e.g. 4 weather symbols with their name on a peg. something like:

 

 

Rainbow = if you are on the rainbow at the end of the day you get a sticker and a 'point' in a book

 

sun = everyone starts on the sun every morning

 

raincloud = done something unacceptable after a warning

 

thunder and lightening = Unacceptable behaviour, speak to their parents at the end of the day

 

though am not sure if this is too much for the children, or whether it may give them a complex about weather!!!

 

or I was thinking of using a chart with all their names on and giving them a 'point' for good behaviour ( linked to our golden rules) though I am not sure how it would work with consequences if it is just a positive points system.

 

I have a very large class (33) so want to have something firmly in place from day one :)

 

Any advice greatly appreciated! :o

 

I saw the sun/cloud system on Teacher's TV and I have seen it in action in a reception class. I think what you have mentioned is probably too complicated for the children because of the lightening and rainbow.

 

In the class I was in there was a sun, a sun/cloud and a cloud. The after the first warning, the child's peg would go to the sun/cloud, then if the child continued the behaviour his/her peg would go to the cloud and it would mean the school's behaviour policy would apply (in this case no 'Golden Time'). I don't really agree with Golden Time in Reception, so this would not be my choice of sanction. However, it worked well and the children did not like having their peg away from the others, so the teacher rarely used the no golden time rule.

 

In my new class, I think I will use the sun cloud system, but just with a sun and a cloud. If after a verbal warning the child continues the behaviour, his/her peg will go on the cloud with a reminder of the behaviour code (what he/she should be doing) code and if s/he continues I would implement the school's sanction , which is to give some form of time out (in class or within another class).

 

Of course I would be using this as a last resort and positive behaviour management (rewarding good behaviour), should hopefully ensure the system doesn't need to be used.

 

Good luck with whatever you try, consistency is the key.

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thanks for the tips and advice everyone.

 

I am thinking possibly the smiley face system as it will be easy for them to understand I hope.

 

Kariana, I have a very big class due to what has happened with the admissions ( best not go into it on a public forum as it's still up in the air at the moment).

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Guest LornaW

Well I have posted before about behaviour so my reply will come as no surprise but first and foremost no you should not have 33 in one reception class!!!

 

 

Anyway that aside if you have an appropriate curriculum with indoor and outdoor on offer and lots of quality child initiated time you should not have too many behaviour problems. It is when we try to show horn children into our set curriculum that you get the problems but if you ensure you make the curriculum fit the child you will have a better time.

 

I have used smiley faces, Golden Time and the sun and cloud in my time and to be honest the best system I have found is confilct resolution. Where children are inviolved in what goes on in the class. That they get given a warning when they are doing something that is not acceptable to the rest of the class or adutls and they are asked to refine their behaviour and in the very early days shown ho this will look. Yes it takes time but boy does it work well once in place.

 

I have used the High/Scope dvd Conflict Resolution there are some interesting video clips here http://www.highscope.org/content.asp?ContentId=381

 

and also a book of theirs called You Can't Come to my Birthday Party

http://www.amazon.co.uk/You-Cant-Come-Birt...3954&sr=1-1

which is excellent.

 

Intrinsic behaviour is always a better system in my book and smileys and stickers are extrinsic and don't have a long lasting effect.

 

Good luck with whatever you try and I do hope there are two teachers with your 33 children.

 

Lorna

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There isn't two teachers Lorna, just me! is that bad? As far as I am aware, although the limit is 30, if the LA give permission, we can have a larger class.

 

I'm sure others will confirm/clarify as ratios are always open to interpretation but my understanding is with a 1:13 ratio you and your team can have 26, but if part of a school you and the assistant (whether full time TA or nursery nurse) can have 30. But no-one in Year 2 and below should have more than 30 children. If LA have okayed it though, then it might be different due to special circumstances.

 

With regards to behaviour, is there a whole school system in place that supports your golden rules? I personally feel uncomfortable with the systems that single out individual children negatively, bit cheesey but think praising the positive and ignoring the rest is best :)

We used to have a smiley face list and if caught someone being kind, listening extra carefully etc we'd write their name on that list and children could be on the list more than once. At the end of every session/hour that list would turn into stickers or points towards certificate, whole class award etc and then we'd start again so everyone always had a chance to be rewarded and there was no dwelling on any unsuitable behaviour. You can have a sad list too and children can end up on sad list and happy list at same time as you praise them for turning their behaviour around. Also can have a special happy face badge for child to wear at end of the day who has the most smiley faces.

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I'm no expert, and writing helps me to clarify in my own mind what I think. This is what I think

 

Poorly behaved children often have poor self esteem and highlighting their misbehaviour for all to see only serves to re-enforce in the child's mind that they are not good. I'm not saying 'Ignore poor behaviour', just 'don't give a dog a bad name'.

 

Regardless of the size of the class it is difficult to keep track of who misses out on privilages and who's parents need speaking to, so I can see the benefit of some sort of system with a note of the nature of the behaviour, but maybe it could be coded and in the adult's area.

 

Achievements should be highlighted though - but evenly so that those for whom good bahaviour is the greatest challenge, get recognition to and attention seeking is not re-enforced. So maybe starting everybody on the Sun each day and when you find something good to celebrate, move them to the Rainbow, or Star. Could have increasing number of steps as everybody achieves their goals.

 

I do know children who are creative with the rules (cheat) though, so moderation may be required.

 

I have lots of boys in my setting and I have started using Yellow and Red cards for warnings and loss of privilages - Golden Time. Worked very well and the parents like it.

 

Good luck and I hope you get your class size sorted.

 

Honey

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I'm sure others will confirm/clarify as ratios are always open to interpretation but my understanding is with a 1:13 ratio you and your team can have 26, but if part of a school you and the assistant (whether full time TA or nursery nurse) can have 30. But no-one in Year 2 and below should have more than 30 children. If LA have okayed it though, then it might be different due to special circumstances.

 

 

If you're part of a school you can have 30 in reception without an assistant! The ratio can be changed by the LA but applies for that school year only. Next year this class of 30 is going to have to be split in some way, presumably unless the year 2 class is less than 30 (meaning there can be a year 1/2 class next year) they will have to only intake 27 next year so 3 of the now reception children can stay in the reception class as part of a year 1/reception class).

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I've seen the Gold card (working well) - Yellow card (warning)- Red card (loss of privileges) system work very well. They added a White card as a first warning in line with the school's policy of 2 warnings. These cards were centrally displayed and the children were very keen to keep their card gold.

 

To add incentive, if the class managed to have a week of 'all gold cards', they were given a very special treat (e.g choc ices on a lovely sunny day or a new toy for their class etc)

Edited by janebe
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Guest LornaW
To add incentive, if the class managed to have a week of 'all gold cards', they were given a very special treat (e.g choc ices on a lovely sunny day or a new toy for their class etc)

 

 

..but what about the one child who may not have had a gold card the rest of the class then blame them for not getting a treat!

 

Also at this age the sanction needs to be there and then not in a weeks time in a weeks time children more often than not have forgotten what they did!

 

Lorna

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Ive seen somewhere a traffic light system that was used at group times, all the children started off on green and so on! I suppose this could be used for individual children if needed!x

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..but what about the one child who may not have had a gold card the rest of the class then blame them for not getting a treat!

 

Individual children were praised highly and rewarded for their own consistent gold cards so blame never came into it - they were Reception age and the system worked well as far as I saw.

Individual children could also have their cards reversed if their behaviour improved or they did something very kind - this was a great incentive and even the naughtiest child in the class would try to 'keep gold'.

The class rewards were not expected every week (that could get expensive!!)

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Ive seen somewhere a traffic light system that was used at group times, all the children started off on green and so on! I suppose this could be used for individual children if needed!x

 

 

I was once told that the traffic light system was not so good if you generally have any more than low level behaviour problems in your class. This is because the ones with the poorest behaviour like the status symbol of being the only one on red because everyone is looking at them. To get round this you make the system private, eg. by walking over to them and showing them a red card discretely, thus taking away the attention factor.

 

I used the traffic lights with my class last year because it was school policy, but the only problem in my class was the very very occasional instances of hitting someone on the playground by some of the rougher boys who were into wrestling. In class I rarely had to use amber and never red since they were luckily well behaved. As this trend was repeated throughout school the system worked well, but wouldn't be so great in a setting with attention seeking behavioural problems.

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Thanks, Lorna :o. I will read it calmly later on.

 

I did see the HS videos and somehow it is similar to what I do in the classroom, only that I found the 2nd one of the practitioners left the child keep complaining for too long. He kept on saying he did not want to share turns on and on. Once my children keep on saying it a 2nd time, I ask the other/s child/ren how he/they feel as well... if they also like to have turns. That way I make child #1 learn to take other people's feelings in consideration and that everyone wants a turn. Finally, "What can we do so that everyone is happy?"

 

I don't recall all the details of the video and I am having problems accessing it now.

 

In regards to the smiley system... We worked with "Super" (followed all classroom rules), "Good" (required help with behaviour in one of few small things) and "Try Again" (required more reminders) smiley faces and "Sad" only when a child had done something like hitting or something very serious.

 

Some parents were realistic about their children, but I also had parents who just wanted their children to be perfect and the parents of one child came to the Administration complaining about the system. The father thought it would go on record, like Primary grades, and the mum just said her child was a good girl and that it was not possible she could get a "Try Again" or a "Sad" face. She did not see that her child had almost all between "Super" and "Good", but that the girl had only got 2 times "Try Again" and 1 time "Sad" and these only happened during the last weeks of the last term. I told Mum that children required the faces to recognise limits. All of this started after we had a new boy in school who really needed a lot of behaviour help... not only him but his mum too... ha-ha. This mum had become quite close to the girl's mum since they both shared the same language. You can imagine, gossip problems because of overprotection.

 

Since I work in a private school and the parents are "clients", then the smiley faces system was eliminated. In a way it gave us back some time because we did not have to fill in each child's agenda each day, but at the same time I felt the children nor the parents knew each day how the behaviour was developing. Okay, I would meet with the parents when it was needed, but sometimes I had tutoring (Grade 1 EFL child and a girl taking Spanish in Secondary) after school and couldn't meet with parents. This will not happen next school year because I said I needed the time for my class children parent's and that was more important for me.

 

So, at the end, I use Conflict Resolution dialogues and we can see that is one of the recommendations in the EYFS. Children lack communication skills because lots of times, in our Modern Era, this is an empty space in many homes or the pressures of life are so much with parents that many of them don't know how to deel with them. I don't think it is on purpose from their part. Lot of time is spent in front of ICT equipment or toys, which become "baby sitter/nanny" or "friend" substitutes. So, communications skills will always help the children in all the 6 areas of learning xD.

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There isn't two teachers Lorna, just me! is that bad? As far as I am aware, although the limit is 30, if the LA give permission, we can have a larger class.

 

How many should I have in my class?

 

 

Sorry to come in late but just wanted to say that if you have more than 30 you do need another teacher.

Recently our LA sent out a letter from the LA's legal department spelling out to all those on Appeals panels the legal situation, and we were told that we could not go over the statutory number of 30 under any circumstances.

Presumably if a school wants to admit more they either have mixed age classes up to 30 or employ an extra member of staff. That would have serious implications for the school's budget. :o

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Ideally there should be around 8 children per adult in a Reception aged group. No? :( Oh, dreaming, dreaming :o Someday over the rainbow... xD

Seconded!!! :(

 

Just seen several children aged 3yrs 11mths in July, off to school in September, leaving behind their friends who are don't reach the ripe old age of 4 until sept/oct - Grrrrrrrrr!!!!

 

I have just vented my feelings on ratios on the consultation response form - I live in hope but doubt things will change any time soon :(

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Found this and thought this may be a good place to post it!

Just a note to say that the High/Scope newsletters are copyrighted publications - however LornaW has kindly provided the link to the High/Scope website where you can set up a free membership and access all kinds of materials for free, including newsletters, video clips etc.

 

You can find it here.

 

Maz

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For general behaviour (carpet time/snack/outdoor) we have a rainbow with a sun on one side and dark cloud on the other. everyone startes on the sun but can cross the rainbow to the cloud depending on behaviour. I'm an NQT in Sept but will keep this.

 

Also I want to have a start chart for good work and behaviour so I can keep reinforcing the good behaviour - Laminated the stars and have chn names down one side in a column and numbers 1-10 in a row per child. I praise as much as possible per golden rules (hand up/taking turns/sharing etc) and chn can move their star across from 1-10. When get to 10 they get a raffle ticket to put in a special jar. At end of each week I'm going to pull one raffle ticket out of the jar and let winner pick a prize out of my prize jar (pound shop here I come). That raffle ticket won't go back into the jar but the others will remain - in otherwords the more times the chn get to 10 stars they more raffle tickets go in the jar with their name on each week they have more and more chance of winning. I know some won't approve and think its bribery but I still remember my reception teacher had us all put our heads on desks on a Friday afternoon and the 'fairy' put a sweet on the desk of well behaved chn - I'm 43 and I still recall it with fond memories.

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I have tried the smiley face and traffic light system but I found that they didn't work and weren't very effective. We use a looooooooooooooootttttt of stickers for positive reinforcement but for the first time this year we established a 'Grand Prix' board. Each child had their own car, named attached with velcro on a board. After we had decided on our classroom rules we explained that a warning would mean entering the pit stop. The child had to physically move their car into the pit stop which sometimes was tramatic enough, however sometimes when they had simply gone passed the warning they reached the finish line and there was a consequence for that. We have Golden Time at our school and all the classes mix with each other so it meant they lost five minutes of their Golden Time. It also meant that their 'star' book had a star crossed out and parents could see they had lost their star and which rule they had broken. It was brilliantly for us and we were really pleased - food for though perhaps?

 

 

On a different note it was interesting to read about numbers and class sizes because this year three children got through on appeal into my class. Although that makes my numbers only 15 next year when they join the Year 1 class there are simply too many children. We argued this with the local council and their reply was based on square footage and class sizes in the past. In their words 'we dont have a leg to stand on'!

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