Dealing with Challenging Behaviour

Caitlin, you have indicated that you have experienced challenging behaviour from you students in the classroom and this happens to many teachers, not just beginning teachers. In order to deal with challenging behaviour, you need to consider the actions you will take to correct the student’s unacceptable behaviour in line with the Department of Education and Communities (2006) Student Discipline in Government Schools Policy.

Woodoo South Public School should also offer advice on how to handle challenging behaviour in their Behaviour Management Plan, so using the whole school approach can also help in dealing with challenging behaviour, as the students are more familiar with these warnings and consequences.

There are a number of strategies that can be used to correct student’s behaviour, including Bill Rogers (2008) Decisive Discipline Technique, which outlines the least to most intrusive steps to get the student back on task and stop displaying unacceptable behaviour.


Here are some consequences you could use when implementing the Decisive Discipline in your classroom:

  • Time out within the classroom: The student will sit in the reading area to have time to think about what they have done or to chill out, in accordance with the Guidelines for Usage of Time-Out Strategies, including Time-Out Rooms by the Department of Education and Communities (2011).
  • Removal of rewards and privileges: Ticks can be removed from the student’s rewards chart, raffle tickets can be confiscated or the student’s privileges can be taken away from them.
  • Conference or contract: The student completes a Think Sheet with you to outline the poor behaviour. The student’s parent/carer will be notified about the unacceptable behaviour and will be required to sign the Think Sheet.
  • Withdrawal to buddy class: The student will be required to go to the class next door for time out. At this time the teacher can assess if the Principal needs to be notified to make judgement on the behaviour.
  • Playground withdrawal: The student must sit in the office during recess or lunch. The amount of time the student is withdrawn depends on the amount of time requested by the teacher. 


Further Reading:

Rogers, B 2011, Classroom Management: A Practical Guide for Effective Teaching, Behaviour Management and Colleague Support, 3rd edn, London, UK.

Rogers, B 2008, The Positive Behaviour Leadership Model, in CH Edwards, Classroom Discipline & Management, 2nd edn, p240-263.

Bill Rogers - Classroom Behaviour - Video