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New Year, New Behavior

150 150 DC Special Education Cooperative

Do you wish to see more positive behavior from students in the New Year? The return from an extended break from school is a prime time to begin anew. Any break in patterns of behavior is a chance to set a new, revised approach. Here are a few considerations for preparing for new behavior in the New Year:

  1. Change in schedule

Is the student’s schedule meeting his/ her needs? Is he/she getting the right amount of instruction and reinforcement throughout the day? What seems like a slight change to us as adults can serve as a significant change for a student.

  1. Additional Information

Challenging behavior is often communicating the need for more information. This could include general, day-to-day information, or more specifically information about an area that is a struggle for a student, such as social skills. Consider how to offer more meaningful information to students.

  1. Positive Reinforcement

Positive incentives are a part of human nature. We are all motivated by what interests us. If a student is following a plan which includes positive reinforcement, consider offering revised incentives in the New Year.

  1. Opportunity for Choice

One of the most effective ways around opposition is to provide choices. What aspects of the student’s day could involve more choice? While Math instruction might not be a choice, where and how the student learns math could be.

  1. Communication

Challenging behavior continues, and increases when what students are communicating through the behavior is not understood by others. How can you ensure that students are being heard? What types of communication and opportunities to communicate with others could be incorporated into the student’s day?

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