This year we have had no snow at all. Meteorologists are calling for “the biggest snow of the season” this Tuesday. We are supposed to be getting 12-16 inches of snow. Part of me is wishing this comes true, but part of me just wants to end school before June 15.
Needless to say, the no-snow season has brought some crazy behaviors into the classroom that are having a direct impact on my students’ academic performance. I did what all good teachers do: reset expectations, boosted our Fun Friday activities and focused on positive behavior by awarding extra Class Dojo points. Even with all these changes, one of my students was still having a hard time making progress behaviorally and academically.
So, I decided it was time to bring out my RTI Individual Behavior Plan to support this particular student. Last yer, DA had a difficult time adjusting to my class’ behavior plan and soon after meeting with his parents, he was diagnosed with ODD. I created this behavior plan after researching and learning more about Oppositional Defiant Disorder. It was past mid-night during winter break when I emailed the plan proposal to one of our school-based therapists and DA’ parents. They both agreed that the plan seemed like a good idea.
As soon as we were back, I started him on the plan. My co-teacher at the time jumped in right away and adopted the plan. The plan was pretty easy so we were able to make it consistent regardless of who was teaching the class. Even enrichment teachers jumped on board, at the end of the class I’d ask teachers if DA had met the 3 behavior goals and he would color the chart based on the teacher feedback.
One key point to making sure he was invested in this plan was allowing him to take breaks after coloring 3 little people. He soon started to connect positive rewards with positive behavior. With the support of my school’s Student Excellence Team; his parents, the school-based therapist, special educator, my co-teacher and I met regularly to discuss student DA’s success. We adapted the behaviors as needed to ensure we continued to work on behaviors that would continue to foster his growth socio-emotionally and academically. By the time the end of the school came around, DA had made so much progress he received honor roll. This year, he is in 2nd grade and he is thriving!
In February, I started my friend CT on this same behavior plan. The first weeks was rough, as expected, but in the last 3 weeks he has made major gains behaviorally and academically. This past week he took his mid-module assessment and his math grade went from 34% to 51%. I am so proud of him!
What behavior interventions have you used in the past that have been successful?