Classroom Conflict: 7 Effective Strategies for Dealing with Challenging Behaviour

Managing classroom conflict is something that teachers have to practice on a daily basis and even the best teachers struggle to keep a bustling classroom under control at times. Kids are often especially volatile after a long summer – and this year they’ll be facing tumultuous changes to the classroom that will further disrupt order.

Challenging behaviour training and other resources are invaluable elements of any teacher’s ongoing training, but for now here are some strategies to help you manage challenging behaviour in the classroom.

1) Take A Restorative Approach

Bringing restorative justice into the schools is an effective strategy for conflict de-escalation and managing challenging behaviour. The restorative approach refers to a range of strategies that entail a reconceptualization of dealing with conflict, but fundamentally it is about creating the space for those who feel harmed to communicate how that harm has affected this. This entails a lot of listening and communication but managing difficult behaviour training can enable teachers to take this approach and heal any incident in the classroom.

2) Getting To Know You

Introductory activities are a great way to start the year, building a sense of community in the classroom and strengthening the bond both between pupils and from teachers to students. As a strategy for handling challenging behaviour it is also quite effective. Clara R. Woodbury, behavioural scientist at Revieweal and Dissertation Services explains that “these practices help you to understand how and why your students behave as they do, which ultimately gives you the understanding to handle problematic behaviour.”

3) Turn Positive Behaviour Into A Lesson

Talking about positive behaviour reinforces its importance in the classroom and can prevent a slippery slope of challenging behaviour becoming normalized. If your class doesn’t understand why good behaviour is, they will struggle to act within the boundaries of this. Managing difficult behaviour starts with information, so wall posters and flashcards are a great way to educate pupils about mutual respect and positive behaviour.

4) Replace Negatives With Positives

When you’re managing challenging behaviour in the classroom it can be easy to express thoughts negatively such as “don’t do that…” or “stop doing that…” Expressing instructions negatively can create an unhealthy relationship with the pupils in your classroom. “Rephrasing instructions positively so that “stop chatting” becomes “please be quiet and let everyone concentrate” implies respect and understanding for your class,” says Teddy Flores, blogger at Eliteassignmenthelp and Best Essay Services. “This will build a strong relationship that prevents much challenging behaviour.”

5) Only Punish Students When Necessary

Our managing challenging behaviour course demonstrates how punishing pupils can lead to a vicious cycle that encourages more bad behaviour. Punishing students can isolate them from the norms of the classroom that limit bad behaviour, and so it should only be used when other forms of reconciliation have failed. Of course, you don’t need to be a soft touch, but understanding punishment in this context can help you make the choice to use it when it’s really necessary.

6) Create A Calm Space

Challenging behaviour often stems from kids feeling overwhelmed and not knowing how to process their feelings. Creating a safe space in the classroom is recommended in our managing difficult behaviour course and can nip acting out in the bud. Designate one corner of your classroom a Quiet Corner and encourage kids to take time out there when they feel overwhelmed – fill it with books, crayons or other distractions that kids can use to destress for the class’s activities.

7) Don’t Practice Public Consequences

It can seem like a good idea to call out kids in front of the whole class, and it’s certainly easier to give in to this impulse when tempers start to rise. However, remembering that kids are operating in a complex social landscape where status is essential will remind teachers that this practice is often counterproductive. Private conversations with pupils about behaviour often have better outcomes as they’ll be more engaged.

School’s Out

Dealing with challenging behaviour in the classroom can be stressful, but by practicing good communication and building boundaries in the classroom class conflict can be kept at a minimum. Armed with these strategies we hope you have a peaceful year!


Katherine Rundell is a writer at Big Assignments and Custom Paper Writing Services services. She started out as a teacher before training as a classroom counselor. Katherine is also a blogger at Boom Essays review.


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