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Positive Praise in the Classroom
December 29, 2013

Positive Praise in the Classroom

So often we hear, “Use positive praise in your classroom!”

But, what does that really mean when it comes to putting that theory into practice?

It means finding the good things happening and addressing it in a positive way.

It does not mean stopping negative behavior in a kind way.

The focus needs to be on the good things.

When I walk into a classroom, I can tell within just a minute or two what the teacher focuses on.

In classrooms where the teacher is continually spotting off-task or negative behavior, the misbehavior is very prevalent, and interrupts instruction.

However, in classrooms where the teacher strategically points out the on-task, positive behavior – the whole classroom has a warmer, kinder, calmer feel.

Sounds great, right?

What steps does it take to get there?

Start small.

When you see something you like, recognize it verbally.

“Sally, I love how you’re sitting nicely!”

“Jim, thanks for being on task!”

“Boys – wow! All of you are practicing self-control! Awesome!”

Just blanket the room in good thoughts, kind words and authentic praise.

Once you get used to seeing things in a new light you can become more strategic in using your praise.

If you see someone off-task, you praise someone next to them that’s on-task.

When someone is calling out – praise someone who raises their hand.

You know that one that can never walk in line properly, shower the students who follow the procedures with praise.

Take a step back: think about the power of your words, contemplate what you've been focusing on, and start seeing your students in a new, positive way!

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See you next month!

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