To Be Heard You Must Be Consistent!
» Be consistent with the rules themselves.
Sometimes children misbehave just to find out where the teacher draws the line. If you are constantly re-drawing lines, you will have persistent trouble. Rules cannot change from week to week based on what kind of day you are having. Likewise, rules cannot change based on the child you are dealing with. Rules must be objective and fair, not arbitrary or relative, if you are going to maintain classroom discipline.
» Be consistent with enforcing the rules.
Rules are worthless unless enforced. Permissiveness yields anarchy and chaos. Children derive security from not only knowing where the boundaries are but that they will be enforced. Rules are designed to protect individual children and the classroom experience from undue harm and distraction. When children feel protected they will be more productive and cooperative.
» Be consistent in following through on consequences.
"Mean what you say and say what you mean!" Empty threats are one of the biggest deterrents to effective disciplining. Consequences provide the child with a negative reinforcement which will cause them to think twice before trying something again.
» Be consistent with how you treat children when disciplining them.
Always be loving, kind, and fair. If you treat children with dignity even when it is necessary to be firm, they will tend to accept what you do although they do not like it. The goal is to correct and train a child, not to provoke him to further misbehavior. If treated with a lack of respect, a child may become more insolent and defiant as a defense mechanism.
(Last updated 9/01/14)
For more training to help you with Classroom Discipline:
Read more tips in the Handbook on the Basics of Classroom Discipline.
Or, go beyond by using the Effectively Handling Classroom Discipline Workbook.
Learn the difference between Biblical Authority versus the Authoritarian and Permissive Teachers Worksheet and the implications for your teaching.
Think through the challenges, causes, corrective measures, and ways to circumvent 56 different discipline issues using the one page sheets in the Discipline Issues: What to Do About Specific Challenges resource.
And, click below to read helpful articles on classroom discipline: