Supporting Positive Behaviour
in Alberta Schools
Dwaine M Souveny
Central Alberta Regional Consortium
2010-2011
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Supporting Positive Behaviour
In Alberta Schools (2008)
 A School Wide Approach
 A Classroom Approach
 An Intensive Individualized Approach
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Supporting Positive Behaviour in Alberta
Schools
10 Key Elements
Key Element One: Positive Relationships
Key Element Two: Learning Environment
Key Element Three: Differentiated Instruction (DI)
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Homework
Supporting Positive Behaviour in Alberta
Schools
Key Element Three: Differentiated Instruction/Interaction
Over the next month (within the next week) design and implement
one instructional setting or interaction that is different for a
particular student than the rest of the class. Report back next time.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Supporting Positive Behaviour in
Alberta Schools
Key Element Four: Behavioural
Expectations Across
Settings/Understanding Student Behaviour
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Understanding
Behavioural Processes
Neurobiological
Child is displaying challenging behaviours due to reduced skill at
understanding and/or processing information
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Neurological Implications for Learned
Behaviour
Diagnoses include:
 Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
 Autism Spectrum Disorder
 Learning Disabilities
 Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
 Depression, Mood Disorders
 Anxiety
 Developmental Coordination Disorder
 Others
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Understanding Children’s Behaviour
Environmental vs. Neurological Basis for
Behaviour
Child is displaying challenging behaviours due to
reduced skill at understanding and/or processing
information
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Understanding
Behavioural Processes
Environmental
Child has “learned” the pattern of behaviours based on
• Observations of other people and their behaviour
(social learning – Modeling Approach)
• Feedback and Consequences for their behaviour
(Behaviour Modification approach) including:
trauma, abuse, neglect
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Function of Behaviour Principles
• Behaviour is related to environment that it
occurs in
• Behaviour serves a purpose
Always remember…
The behaviour works for the student!!!
.... What is being “communicated”?
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Functional Behaviour Assessment
It is essential to understand the purpose or
function the behaviour is serving the
individual, as well as the context in which that
behaviour occurs.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Functional Behaviour Assessment:
ABCs For Success
Assessment involves examining both
antecedents and consequences to understand
their effects on behaviour.
– Antecedents are any situations, events, demands
or expectations that proceed or trigger problem
behaviours.
– Behaviour – frequency, duration and severity
– Consequences are any events or conditions which
follow behaviour.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Functional Behaviour Assessment
Generally, effective intervention
approaches are most successful if
both antecedents and
consequences are addressed.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Scenario
The teacher has given all of the students a worksheet
to complete. She then begins providing individual
support to some of the students having difficulty
with the task. Jason begins the task and then starts
talking to the boy next to him. The teacher notices
him talking and instructs him to work on his own
sheet. Jason returns to his work briefly then begins
taking with the girl behind him. The teacher tells him
to turn around. He does but then starts talking to the
boy again. The teacher eventually works directly with
Jason and he gets his work done.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
If the function of behaviour is to Gain
Attention
• Increase attention for appropriate behaviour
• Increase social engagements such as peer
buddies, partner work, use of volunteers,
mentors
• Teach communication abilities such as asking
for help, seeking peers and adult interactions
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
If the function of behaviour is Escape
or Avoidance
• Give frequent breaks contingent on positive
completion of tasks
• Increase choice making
• Provide positive “escapes”
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
If the function of behaviour is Power
and Control
• Find positive leadership opportunities
• Directly teach assertiveness skills through
positive communication training
• Give ways to gain status constructively
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
If the function of behaviour is SelfRegulation
•
•
•
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•
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Evaluate environmental influences
Monitor stress and anxiety
Preferential seating and “safe places”
Jobs and constructive movement breaks
Sensory integration strategies as appropriate
Others?
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Understanding children:
• When is time out a desired consequence?
• When is receiving a “good talking to”
something that a person might seek?
• When is praise, a pat on the back or receiving
a special “treat” perceived as being negative?
• What is the concern with the following
sequence of behaviour?
– Johnny begins to have a melt down, he is escorted
from the room , when he is quiet he gets to go on
the computer
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
The Escalation Cycle:
G. Colvin, 2004 (p.33)
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Trigger Events
Fast Trigger Events (p. 31)
• Being asked to do something
• Being told “no”
• Receiving negative feedback or a negative
consequence
• Being in a stressful situation (teacher asking for a
response)
• Being near a person the student feels is adversarial
• Perceiving a threat or receiving something
unpleasant
• The teacher’s absence
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Trigger Events
Slow triggers (p. 32)
• Family related factors
• Medical and health issues (lack of sleep)
• Social and community factors (gangs)
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
De-escalation of Conflict Situations
• Use brief, simple stress reduction techniques
before responding to a student remark or
behaviour.
• Respond to student in a neutral, business-like,
calm voice.
• Keep responses brief.
• Use well-timed supportive techniques to
interrupt escalation.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
De-escalation of Conflict Situations
• Try paraphrasing the essential points of
student concerns.
• Use open-ended questions to better
understand the problem situation and find
possible solutions.
• Use nonverbal strategies to defuse potential
confrontations.
• Ask the student, “Is there anything that we
can work out at this time to earn your
cooperation?”
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
The Physiological Response: “Do
Turtle” (p. 49)
1.
Talk about a turtle
– Has it’s strengths: slower - yet can still win race
against a rabbit
– Hard on outside but soft on inside
– Can go into shell for a short time when upset and
come back feeling better
2.
Demonstrate “Do turtle”
– Hands folded together, fingers intertwined with
thumbs sticking out
– Slowly blow out on each of four legs and then head to
cool turtle down
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
3. Practice “Do turtle’
– Initially during non upsetting times
– Then during imaginary upsetting times (visualization or
role play)
– Then when starting to get upset and
– Finally cue and practice when upset
Teach, Practise, Model and Encourage use.
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
The Benefits of a School-Wide Approach
• Encourages staff to develop, implement, and
monitor school and classroom behavioural
expectations
• Ensures consistency across all settings
• Provides predictability for staff, students, and
parents
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
School-wide Expectations (pg 29)
•
•
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•
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Use clear language in a positive manner
Are present, visible and understood
throughout the school
Include all students
Targets specific behaviours
Are known and understood by all students
and adults in the school
Creates a framework for decision making
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
School Wide Expectations
E.g. Hallway (pg 30)
Expectations
Respect yourself
Respect Others
Respect Property
Related Behaviour
• Walk with your head up to keep
safe
• Keep hands to self
• Give other students room to
move past you safely. Use a quiet
voice.
• Put litter in trash basket.
• Look at hallway displays but
don’t touch
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
Activity: School-wide Behavioural
Expectations Template
Using the Template on Page 33 of A School Wide
Approach - review the school-wide
expectations in your school
Look for:
a) Strengths
b) Areas to be developed
D.M. Souveny
Understanding Student Behaviour
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