PhilosophyThis lesson plan is designed for students in grades 4 to 8. It is used when a student has been sent to detention or has otherwise been separated from her peers. It involves the student in the process of behavior modification be encouraging her to see why her behavior was unacceptable, and what she can do to correct it.
Lesson PlanGive the student a worksheet with blanks in it as shown below. The student should copy the worksheet onto a separate piece of paper, filling in the blanks as appropriate, and then return both to you. Encourage your student to think hard about his answers to each question, and remind him that you will read what he writes, and may share it with his parents or the principal.
"We come to school to learn. I understand that my behavior in school affects my ability to learn, the ability of my peers to learn, and the ability of my teacher to help us learn. I understand that good behavior makes it easier for everyone to learn and that bad behavior makes it harder for everyone to learn. I understand that good behavior is about respect for my peers and my teacher. Just as I would hope my classmates respect my learning, I want my classmates to know that I respect their learning. I am writing this because I did not show my classmates respect by having good behavior.
"My bad behavior was that I \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_. This was wrong because \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_. In the future, I can act differently by \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_. My teacher can help me with this goal if he/she \_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_\_.
"I promise to treat my classmates and my teacher the way I want to be treated, to give them the respect that I want them to give to me, and will try to show good behavior from now on so that we may all continue to learn."
Action and Follow-UpWhen your student has finished the assignment, read over it with him and ask questions. Try to see if he really understands why his behavior was disruptive, and explore the method he came up with to help change his behavior in the future. If necessary, suggest alternative solutions. This exercise is about encouraging positive behavior modification in your students, so try to remain focused on their ideas, as they are more likely to take an interest in positive behavior if they have come up with solutions themselves.
Keep the assignment, and be sure to refer back to what the student wrote in the future if problems arise again. It is more powerful to recall the student's own promises to himself rather than to simply remind him of what you want him to do. Behavior modification has grown out of the theories of operant conditioning, and uses reinforcement and punishment to help shape behavior. It is useful for both extinguishing negative behaviors and fostering positive ones. This psychological theory can be applied to the classroom, and a specialized lesson plan may be used to help guide the teacher to present the idea of behavior modification to his students.