What is the Intervention?
This intervention is a classroom management intervention aimed at creating routines and communicating to students the behaviors that are desired in the classroom.
Who is it for?
Students of all ages
Expectations should clearly communicate to students the behaviors that are desired in the classroom. Expectations provide the basis for maintaining a safe and effective learning environment. In addition, research has demonstrated that establishing, teaching, and enforcing expectations can reduce instances of problem behavior.
Classroom expectations should reflect behaviors that are important to the teacher and the school. Some schools may have general expectations for student behavior or specific behavior support systems in place. Classroom expectations can be aligned with or may extend beyond school-wide rules.
Expectations should be stated positively, communicating exactly what students need to DO to be successful in the classroom. That is, effective expectations focus on the DO, not the DON’T. In addition, expectations should be clear and accompanied with operational definitions, as well as teachers’ responses when the expectations are and are not followed. For example, “Be polite” is abstract while “Raise your hand and wait to be called on” is more concrete. Finally, the number of expectations should be limited to three to five so that they are easily remembered.
Students learn classroom expectations through explicit teacher instruction and teacher responses to appropriate and inappropriate student behavior. That is, teachers need to explain the content of each expectation, modeling behavior aligned with the expectation. In addition, teachers need to develop and communicate a plan for providing praise for complying with expectations that acknowledge the desired behavior, a plan for providing corrective feedback for misbehavior, and a response hierarchy (i.e., predetermined consequences) for instances when students repeatedly do not follow the expectations. The ratio of positive to negative statements given by teachers to students should be at least 4:1.
Materials Needed (See Attached Materials)
- Expectations clearly posted in the classroom
- Expectations Reference Guide
- Expectations Worksheet
- Examples of Expectations
Steps for Implementation
- Create expectations for the classroom (the attached Expectation Worksheet may help). Expectations should be:
- Stated in positive terms
- Observable and measurable
- Simply stated and age appropriate
- Kept to a minimum (3 to 5)
- Develop a plan for providing praise for students when they comply with expectations and a plan for providing corrective feedback for misbehavior. The ratio of positive to negative statements given by teachers to students should be approximately 4:1.
- Explicitly teach expectations to students through examples, practice, and feedback
- Post expectations and frequently remind students of the expectations