6 Ways Teachers Should Respond to Academic and Behavioral Problems
To be an effective teacher, it’s essential to be able to respond to academic failure and misbehavior in all students. If you attempt to instruct and discipline all children based on your own cultural frame of reference, you are setting yourself up for failure. Culturally diverse children resent being educated from a viewpoint that devalues their cultural heritage.
They perform best when instructors incorporate aspects of their cultural experience into the curriculum and discipline them with cultural sensitivity. Remember this the next time you attempt to reprimand or give up on a minority student just because she is not assimilating into the Eurocentric mainstream.
Teachers should respond to academic and behavioral problems in the following ways:
- Begin interventions with the child as soon as a problem becomes apparent to prevent them from falling further behind academically, or, in the case of a behavioral problem, to prevent the situation from escalating.
- Schedule a meeting with the child’s parents and other relevant professionals as soon as possible to discuss how to best deal with the child’s issues.
- Make a list of the child’s positive attributes and skills to cultivate feelings of hope, caring, and encouragement. This transmits a sense of confidence in the student, which will help them become resilient.
- Recognize your own feelings of emotional burnout. Children are good at sensing when they are aggravating someone, or are not liked, and it will hurt their ability to learn, as well as the teacher’s ability to provide effective instruction and guidance. Discuss feelings of frustration with trusted colleagues to gain perspective, and hopefully, to avoid burnout.
- Do not let your feelings of frustration about a child with academic and/or behavioral issues negatively impact your attitude and teaching style with the rest of the class.
- Document all intervention efforts to provide accurate feedback on the child’s progress as well as to inform parents and other professionals about the steps taken to remedy the situation.
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