Promoting Positive Behaviour and Preventing Behaviour Issues

Schools can take a number of steps, both within and outside the classroom, to promote positive behaviours and prevent incidences of challenging behaviour. Strategies include:

  • defining and teaching explicit school-wide and classroom behavioural expectations
  • establishing mechanisms for recognising and rewarding positive behaviour
  • establishing and communicating consistent school-wide and classroom consequences for challenging behaviour
  • establishing school-wide and classroom processes for early identification of students experiencing academic and/or behaviour difficulty
  • developing school-wide and classroom processes for ongoing collection and use of data for decision-making
  • empowering students by creating multiple opportunities for them to take responsibility and be involved in decision-making
  • providing a physical environment conducive to positive behaviours and effective engagement in learning
  • utilising evidence-based interventions, monitored regularly for those students who face difficulty with learning and/or behaviour.

In the classroom, quality planning and instruction that is tailored to the needs of the students will can prevent and reduce challenging behaviour. Some specific instructional strategies include:

  • When planning activities, consider both how much time students will need to complete it and how long they are likely to be fully engaged by it - this will often vary depending on the type of activity. 
  • Take into account the interests of your students and integrate these into lessons.
  • Be mindful of how much time you spend on lesson introductions and instructions. Align this time with the amount of time students are able to actively pay attention.​
  • Use clear, consistent, step-by-step instructions to support students.
  • Provide additional instructions when students are working in smaller groups.
  • Try to minimise interruptions to your learning activities​.