Course: Community Based Rehabilitation-II (3614)
2021 Level: MA
Assignment no 1.
Question no 1
Explain the role of special schools/centres for the rehabilitation of disabled person. How special day as well as residential schools provide support to the parents of the special children?
As a special educator you will come in contact with and be responsible for the educational needs of children with a wide range of disabilities. These children will also require a variety of different services, modifications and accommodations in their educational experiences. Knowledge of each type of disability and the specific needs of the children with that disability are crucial if you plan to be or are already involved in the field of special education. The various categories of disabilities are clearly defined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004. These include:
- emotional disturbance,
- hearing impairment (including deafness),
- mental retardation,
- multiple disabilities,
- orthopedic impairment,
- other health impairment,
- specific learning disability,
- speech or language impairment,
- traumatic brain injury, or
- visual impairment (including blindness).
The special education teacher in today’s schools plays a very critical role in the proper education of exceptional students. The teacher is unique in that he/she can fit many different roles in the educational environment. However, each of these distinct roles involves a variety of responsibilities and functions. Understanding these responsibilities can only help the special educator become more familiar with the role and increase the chances for success. For instance, the special education teacher can be assigned to a variety of different educational situations. The varying educational roles of a special education teacher are described in this course.
A teacher in a self contained special education classroom in a general education school: This role would involve working with a certain number of disabled students in a special education setting. This type of setting allows for the use of mainstreaming, the involvement of a disabled child in a general education classroom for a part of the regular school day, as an educational tool when a student is ready for this type of transitional technique. The teacher in a self-contained classroom is usually assisted by a teaching assistant.
In this type of setting the special educator may be faced with a variety of
responsibilities including but not limited to the following:
¾ Curriculum development
¾ Parent conferences
¾ Pre-and post testing using group standardized tests
¾ Involvement at the annual review-an annual meeting held by the IEP Committee to discuss the progress of each child with a disability and to plan the next year’s Individual Education Plan ¾ Involvement in the triennial evaluation process-an evaluation that takes place every three years to determine if the conditions for the original classification are still present or need to be modified. The requirement here would be limited to progress reports and recommendations for the following year. ¾ Monitoring the IEP, modifications and accommodations
2- The resource teacher in a categorical or non categorical resource room: A resource room in a special school which deals with only one type of exceptionality is called a categorical resource room. A non categorical resource room is a resource room usually found in the regular mainstream school where children with varied exceptionalities are educated at one time. This type of role necessitates close involvement with each child’s homeroom teacher and the transfer of practical techniques and suggestions to facilitate the child’s success while in the general education setting. In this type of setting the special educator may be faced with a variety of responsibilities including but not limited to the following
¾ Curriculum modification: here the resource teacher assists the classroom teacher in modifying the curriculum to meet the learning style and needs of the child with a disability ¾ Parent conferences
¾ Educational evaluator: in many cases the resource room teacher is asked to do the educational evaluations for initial evaluations, screening and triennial evaluations. ¾ Pre-and post testing using group standardized tests ¾ Involvement at the annual review-an annual meeting held by the IEP Committee to discuss the progress of each child with a disability and to plan the next year’s Individual Education Plan ¾ Involvement in the triennial evaluation process-an evaluation that takes place every three years to determine if the conditions for the original classification are still present or need to be modified. The requirement here would be limited to either discussion of test results or to update the progress of the student and recommendations for the following year. ¾ Monitoring the IEP, modifications and accommodations
3- An educational evaluator on the Child Study Team (CST): The CST is a school based support team that discusses and makes recommendation on high-risk students.
The role of an educational evaluator on this team requires a complete and professional
understanding of testing and evaluation procedures, and diagnosis and interpretation of test results.
In this type of setting the special educator may be faced with a variety of
responsibilities including but not limited to the following:
¾ Educational evaluator for initial evaluations (evaluations performed on
students being classified for the first time).
¾ Involvement in the triennial evaluation process-an evaluation that takes place
every three years to determine if the conditions for the original classification are still
present or need to be modified.
¾ Interpreting diagnostic results from outside evaluations
The main role of the special education teacher is to provide instruction and support which facilitates the participation of students with disabilities in the regular classroom.
The special education teachers should:
- Serve as case managers and be responsible for the development, implementation, and evaluation of students’ IEPs.
- Provide the necessary information to the classroom teacher prior to the child entering the general education classroom regarding the student’s disability, medical concerns, and/or equipment operation (ways to meet unique needs).
- Collaborate with the general education teacher in adapting the curriculum, providing appropriate modifications, ensuring the implementation of modifications, and assessing overall progress of the child.
- Develop schedules and supervise plans for paraeducators.
- With the general education teacher, develop and supervise plan for paraprofessional duties.
- Complete and maintain all assigned student’s records (i.e., IEP, ESYP, documentation, progress report, behavior plan, etc.).
- Maintain contact with the assigned student’s parents or family.
- Maintain collaborative relationship and goodwill with general educators.
- May team teach lessons, either small group or whole class (Boyer & Mainzer, 2003).
Identify the ways for selection and maintenance of residence for the persons the disabilities.
Learning disability is a general term that refers to a heterogeneous group of
disorders manifested by significant difficulties in the acquisition and use of listening, speaking, reading, writing, reasoning, or mathematical abilities. These disorders are intrinsic to the individual, presumed to be due to central nervous system dysfunction, and may occur across the life span.
result of a poor academic background, emotional disturbance, lack of motivation, or visual or auditory acuity problems (Association of Higher Education and Disability). A person with a learning disability may have average or above average intelligence. In fact, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, Nelson Rockefeller, Thomas Edison, Woodrow Wilson, George Patton, Walt Disney, and Hans Christian Anderson are all thought to have had learning disabilities.
People with Disabilities
Do not refer to a disability or condition unless it is crucial to your subject and relates to the full understanding of your listener or reader.
Avoid portraying as superhuman the accomplishments of a person with a disability. This inadvertently implies that a person with a disability lacks or has very limited skills, talents, or unusual gifts.
Do not use subjective terms such as afflicted with, victim of, troubled with, suffering from and so on. Such expressions convey negative connotations. It is preferable to use an expression such as a person who has (a specific disability).
Avoid labeling persons and putting them in categories, as in the handicapped, the disabled, the deaf, the retarded, the learning disabled,and so on. Instead, use terminology such as: a person who has multiple sclerosis, people with disabilities, a person with deafness, and so on.
Emphasize the individual not the disability. Rather than using terms such as disabled person, handicapped people, a crippled person, use terms such as people/persons with disabilities, a person with a disability, or a person with a visual impairment.
Do not use subjective descriptors such as “unfortunate”, “pitiful”, or “sad” when describing people with disabilities. Emphasize abilities, for example, instead of saying John is confined to his wheelchair, use a positive expression of ability such as John uses a wheelchair. Or, Mary is partially sighted rather than Mary is partially blind.
Avoid comparing a disability with a disease. Do not refer to a person with disability as a patient unless he/she is under medical care.
It is preferable to use terms such as consumer or person with a disability rather than terms such as client.
Do not minimize individual differences that distinguish one person with a disability from another with the same disability, by using a phrase such as garden variety (specific disability) to refer to an individual or group of individuals with similar disabilities.
As a service provider to people with disabilities, avoid using possessive generalizations such as my MRs, or our LDs. Expressions such as the people we serve with partial vision, the persons we serve with developmental disabilities, or the persons we serve who are differently abled, promote positive recognition of individuals.
For more information on using “People First Language” please contact the REACH Resource Centers on Independent Living in Fort Worth, Dallas, Denton, and Plano, TX.
Appropriate Terminology for Specific Disabilities
Listed below are preferred words that reflect a positive attitude in portraying disabilities:
Blind. Describes a condition in which a person has a loss of vision for ordinary life purposes. Generally, anyone with less than 10% of normal vision would be regarded as legally blind.
Burn Injury. Describes damage to the skin which permanently alters its appearance. Rather than say burn victim say burn survivor or person with a burn injury.
Deaf. Deafness refers to a profound degree of hearing loss that prevents understanding speech though the ear. Hearing impaired and hearing loss are generic terms used by some individuals to indicate any degree of hearing loss–from mild to profound. These terms include people who are hard of hearing and deaf. However, some individuals completely disfavor the term hearing impaired. Others prefer to use deaf or hard of hearing. Hard of hearing refers to a mild to moderate hearing loss that may or may not be corrected with amplification. Use woman who is deaf, boy who is hard of hearing, individuals or people with hearing loss.
Disability. General term used for a functional limitation that interferes with a person’s ability for example, to walk, lift, hear, or learn. It may refer to a physical, sensory, or mental condition. Use as a descriptive noun or adjective, such as person living with AIDS, woman who is blind. or man with a disability. Impairment refers to loss or abnormality of an organ or body mechanism, which may result in disability.
Handicap. Not a synonym for disability. Describes a condition or barrier imposed by society, the environment, or by one’s own self. Some individuals prefer inaccessible or not accessible to describe social and environmental barriers. Handicap can be used when citing laws and situations but should not be used to describe a disability. Do not refer to people with disabilities as the handicapped or handicapped people. Say the building is not accessible for a wheelchair-user. The stairs are a handicap for her.
Head injury. Describes a condition where there is long-term or temporary disruption in brain functioning. Use persons with head injury, people who have sustained brain damage , woman who has sustained traumatic brain injury, or boy with a closed head injury.
Mental Illness/Mental Disability. Describes a condition where there is loss of social and/or vocational skills. Do not use mentally deranged, crazy, deviant. Mental disability describes all of the recognized forms of mental illness, severe emotional disorder, or mental retardation. Terms such as neurotic, psychotic, and schizophrenic should be reserved for technical medical writing only. Use man with mental illness, woman with a mental disorder.
Non-disabled. Appropriate term for people without disabilities. The terms normal, able-bodied, healthy, or whole are inappropriate.
Seizure. Describes an involuntary muscular contraction, a brief impairment or loss of consciousness, etc. resulting from a neurological condition such as epilepsy or from an acquired brain injury. Rather than epileptic, say girl with epilepsy or boy with a seizure disorder. The term convulsion should be used only for seizures involving contraction of the entire body.
Spastic. Describes a muscle with sudden abnormal and involuntary spasm. Not appropriate for describing someone with cerebral palsy. Muscles are spastic, not people.
Special. Describes that which is different or uncommon about any person. Do not use to describe person with disabilities. (Except when citing laws or regulations).
Specific Learning Disability. Describes a permanent condition that affects the way individuals with average or above-average intelligence take in, retain and express information. Specific is preferred, because it emphasizes that only certain learning processes are affected.
Speech Disorder Describes a condition where a person has limited or difficult speech patterns. Use child who has a speech disorder. For a person with no verbal speech capability, use woman without speech. Do not use mute.
Spinal Cord Injury. Describes a condition where there has been permanent damage to the spinal cord. Quadriplegia describes substantial or total loss of function in all four extremities. Paraplegia refers to substantial ot total loss of function in the lower part of the body only. Say man with paraplegia, woman who is paralyzed.
Visually Impaired is the generic term preferred by some individuals to refer to all degrees of vision loss. Examples: boy who is blind, girl who is visually impaired, man who has low vision.
The Impact learning disabilities have on academic performance
No two individuals with a learning disability are alike. Adults with learning disabilities require careful clinical assessment to determine (1) the specific nature of their disability and (2) appropriate accommodation strategies. The following list gives examples of the impact that various learning disabilities have on academic performance.
(From: College Students with Learning Disabilities: A Student’s Perspective, Carol Wren & Laura Segal, DePaul University, Chicago, IL)
Confusion of similar words, difficulty using phonics, problems reading multi-syllable words
Slow reading rate and/or difficulty adjusting speed to the nature of the reading task
Difficulty with comprehension and retention of material that is read, but not with material presented orally
Difficulty with sentence structure, poor grammar, omitted words
Frequent spelling errors, inconsistent spelling, letter reversal
Difficulty copying from board or overhead
Poorly formed letters, difficulty with spacing, capitals, and punctuation
Difficulty expressing themselves clearly and precisely
Difficulty processing information presented orally, despite normal hearing
Difficulty attending to spoken language, inconsistent concentration
Difficulty expressing ideas orally although the student seems to understand the ideas
Problems describing events or stories in proper sequence
Residual problems with grammar, difficulty with inflectional or derivational
Difficulty memorizing basic facts
Confusion or reversal of numbers, number sequence, or operational symbols
Difficulty copying problems, aligning columns
Difficulty reading or comprehending word problems
Problems with reasoning and abstract concepts
Poor organization and time management
Difficulty following directions
Difficulty taking notes
Poor organization of notes and other written materials
Needs more time to complete assignments
A general lack of ability to develop strategies
Difficulty “reading” facial expressions, body language
Problems interpreting subtle messages such as sarcasm
Confusion in spatial orientation, getting lost easily, difficulty following direction.
Disorientation in time, difficulty telling time
Strategies for Students with Learning Disabilities
Question no 3
What are training skill requirements for career counseling? Whose responsibility is it to set up career counseling mechanisms? Does the government any role?
Career counseling is a type of advice-giving and support provided by career counselors to their clients, to help the clients manage their journey through life, learning and work changes (career). This includes career exploration, making career choices, managing career changes, lifelong career development and dealing with other career-related issues. There is no agreed definition of career counseling worldwide, mainly due to conceptual, cultural and linguistic differences. However, the terminology of ‘career counseling’ typically denotes a professional intervention which is conducted either one-on-one or in a small group. Career counseling is related to other types of counseling (e.g. marriage or clinical counseling). What unites all types of professional counseling is the role of practitioners, who combine giving advice on their topic of expertise with counseling techniques that support clients in making complex decisions and facing difficult situations.
Effective counseling skills are vital in forming a strong alliance between the client and therapist.
When combined, such competencies support clients through treatment and help them reach their goal of overcoming the pressures of modern life and leading a more fulfilling existence (Tan, Leong, Tan, & Tan, 2015).
Various counseling skills can be learned and developed to foster and maintain the psychological process, including good communication, problem solving, and goal setting, and introduce coping techniques such as self-talk and visualization (Nelson-Jones, 2014; Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan, 2015).
This article introduces and examines counseling skills and techniques for supporting the psychological process underpinning therapy and setting and achieving counseling goals.
Various counseling skills underpin the psychological process and are required to become an effective therapist. They have five different goals (Nelson-Jones, 2014):
Clients feel heard, understood, and affirmed.
Managing a problem situation
Clients often need help tackling a specific, problematic situation.
The individual requires support in overcoming more general problems, such as feeling depressed.
Strengthening insufficiently strong skills
Clients can develop or replace the weak and deficient skills that cause them to face the same problems repeatedly, such as broken relationships or challenges at work.
Enhancing skill strength goals
Clients do not always seek help in resolving specific problems; sometimes, they simply require the skills to function better.
The therapist’s skills help the client achieve one or more of the goals above, overcome the problems they face, and acquire techniques to support new ways of thinking and behaving.
Real Examples of Good Counseling Skills
Good counseling skillsEffective counseling and therapy require many skills; they combine to build and maintain the therapeutic relationship and improve the likelihood of a positive outcome from the psychological process (Cochran & Cochran, 2015; Nelson-Jones, 2014).
While there are various skills, the following are practical examples requiring positive and specific counseling skills.
Creating visual images
Visual images can be powerful tools for entering and understanding a client’s frame of reference (Nelson-Jones, 2014).
When a client explains their situation and the challenges they face, it can be helpful to form a mental representation of what life may be like for them. Visualization can provide insight into how they interpret events problematically, using their personal experiences and beliefs to shape their internal representation (Nelson-Jones, 2014).
Self-talk is a valuable intervention for clients learning to cope with stress and anger (Nelson-Jones, 2014). Skilled therapists help clients with self-talk in the following ways:
Highlight negative self-talk
Clients often rely on damaging, negative self-talk. Skilled therapists can show clients how to explore their statements in problematic situations, such as presenting at work or forming relationships.
Educate clients about coping self-talk
Clients can learn positive self-talk as a helpful coping strategy, supporting an internal dialogue that calms nerves and focuses on the task at hand.
Capture helpful self-talk
Clients can discover how to capture positive self-talk and use it at the correct time.
Therapists may occasionally counsel clients in potential or immediate danger. While their influence may feel limited, “counselors’ primary source of influence to keep clients safe through situations of imminent danger is the therapeutic relationship they form with each client” (Cochran & Cochran, 2015, p. 201).
Strong therapeutic relationship skills, such as the following, help manage client crises:
While tempting to see only the dilemma faced, it is crucial to know the person and accept them. It is imperative to connect with the client and make your understanding visible.
Empathy is essential within any therapeutic relationship yet may need to be increased during times of crisis. It must be communicated clearly to the client so that they are aware of the connection formed.
Explain what is going on
If the therapist is distracted, perhaps listening for and assessing danger signals, they must tell the client. Otherwise, if the client senses anything less than the therapist’s full attention, they may assume judgmental and critical thoughts or even boredom.
Carefully state feeling
Clients may not always be aware that the therapist cares for them. Stating that they want the clients to be safe, well, and happy and sharing concern for their wellbeing can help justify a request to plan, complete an assessment, or follow a course of treatment.
Therapeutic listening and reflection
Therapeutic listening and reflection throughout each session show caring and connection.
Planning for a client’s wellbeing and safety requires agreeing with the client what steps they will take and actions they are willing to put in place.
career guidance governed?
With responsibility for career guidance split across ministries and levels of government, strong coordination is needed. This section describes both the formal and informal mechanisms used across OECD countries to facilitate such coordination horizontally across ministries and vertically between levels of government. It also discusses the involvement of other stakeholders outside of government, including the social partners and professional associations.
Horizontal coordination between ministries
Career guidance for adults sits at the intersection of employment and education policy, and is therefore not always the responsibility of one single ministry. It differs in this way from career guidance for young people, which generally falls to the Ministry of Education. This can raise challenges for ensuring a seamless coordination of the delivery of career guidance across Ministries and preventing duplication or gaps in provision.
The three most common bodies responsible for adult career guidance are the Ministry of Labour, the Ministry of Education and the public employment service (PES) (Figure 4.1). The Ministry of Labour and the PES have jurisdiction over guidance helping unemployed or at-risk adults to find work or improve their employability. The Ministry of Education oversees education guidance that relates to selecting formal adult learning opportunities (e.g. basic skills training, second chance programmes and university courses for adults).
Question no 4
What is career assessment? How does each of career assessment help the persons with disabilities (PWDs)?
Disability Assessment Mean?
Disability assessments are a type of assessment used to determine the nature of an individual’s physical or mental limitations if any exist. They are used in occupational contexts to determine how a worker’s disability would affect his or her ability to perform a specific job.
For safety-sensitive positions, these assessments can determine whether or not an individual’s disability disqualifies them from a position due to the physical limitation resulting in an increased level of safety risk.
In most advanced countries, disabled individuals are protected under “equal employment” and anti-discrimination laws that limit an employer’s ability to deny an individual a job based on a physical or mental impairment. These laws impose certain obligations upon employers that prevent disability assessments from being used to provide a pretext to deny employment to an individual. A safety-sensitive position cannot be denied to a disabled individual unless the assessment actually demonstrates that the individual would not be able to fulfill the role safely.
Disability assessments, also called “fit to work” assessments, take place within a great deal of legal context that is designed to prevent unfair discrimination against disabled workers. In the United States, the Americans with Disabilities Act prevents employers from seeking any information about a disability until after a conditional employment offer has been made. Once an offer has been made, disability assessments may be conducted only if all prospective candidates are tested in the same way and to the same standard.
If an employee has been working at a position for an extended period, his or her employers are usually unable to seek information about whether he or she is disabled. An employer may only request a disability assessment if it directly relates to an employee being able to perform a function that is necessary for that job.
Furthermore, employers must provide disabled employees with any “reasonable accommodations” that may exist that would allow them to perform a job that their disability would otherwise preclude them from. Disability assessments are also used to provide information that determines what reasonable accommodations are appropriate to mitigate the impact of a specific disability.
In hazardous workplaces with disabled individuals, a disability assessment may be carried out to determine if and how an individual’s disability exacerbates the level of risk associated with a hazard. For instance, EU employers face a specific obligation to review the particular risks faced by any disabled person in the workplace (Framework Directive 89/391/EEC) and must provide reasonable accommodations in the form of additional or alternate risk controls that reduce risk to the employee to an acceptable level. An employee may also initiate a disability assessment to demonstrate that he or she has a disability that the employer has a duty to accommodate
Career assessments are used to help educate students about themselves and their career opportunities. These assessments are one of the most fundamental tools to career guidance.
During career exploration, the right career assessment can play a critical role in moving students from a state of unawareness and confusion into their next opportunity. A good career assessment helps students increase their self-awareness and their understanding of the job market.
Most career assessments follow the methodology that a student needs to understand their interests, aptitudes, values, and skills to determine where they fit within the job market. Career counselors have a myriad of options when it comes to choosing a career assessment.
To make a decision on which one to go with, you’ll need to know:
why you want a career assessment
how you plan to use it, and
what kind of assessment will work best.
When considering which career assessment is best for your situation, you’ll want to work through a series of questions and possible career assessments.
Here’s our guide to the process:
Why do I want to use a career assessment?
The first thing you’ll want to do decide when considering career assessments is why you need one in the first place. Career assessments are a good method to:
- Increase self-awareness
- Increase awareness about the labor market
- Get students excited about Careers
- Prompt self-reflection
- Act as a jumping-off point for counselors
- Provide guidance
While most career assessments are able to increase self-awareness and promote self-reflection, it takes a special process and assessment to get students excited and passionate about their careers. While you read through the guide and think about creating a process around an assessment, keep in mind that how a student engages with an assessment will affect how much value they take away from it and how invested they are in their results.
In short, if students are bored or confused by an assessment, it is not going to accomplish much as the student won’t be motivated by their results. On the other hand, if a student loves taking the assessment and feels like it was personal to them, they are likely to be excited about their results and engaged in careers overall. This gets at the true purpose of an assessment: ignite passion in the person
You can only ignite this passion in a person when you pair the correct career assessment with the correct environment:
For what context do I want career assessments?
Before you choose a career assessment, you’ll want to know the context in which you plan to use it. You’ll want to think about:
The Audience: Who is going to take the assessment? How old are they? Are they fluent in the language of the assessment? Are they open to career guidance?
The Objective: Is the user a novice in career and vocational exploration? Are they a career changer with years of experience? Are they a dedicated student considering career options?
The Environment: Where is the user going to take the assessment? Will there be a proctor or counselor present?
The Debrief: Will a counselor meet with the user about their results? Do you have enough resources to meet with every user?
Understanding the context in which you are going to use career assessment is critical to having a successful session. Make sure before you move forward with career assessments you’ve carefully considered your audience, objective, environment, and period for debriefing.
career assessment support
Career counseling is a process. Generally, a person begins in at state of unawareness and confusion about themselves, the job market or both and the process should bring them to some resolution. The Career Diamond is a well documented framework that illustrates this process:Career Assessment – Career Diamond
The career diamond illustrates the person, beginning at the “A” stage. At that point, the person is aware that they need to make a career choice or go through career exploration. The first step in the process is making sure the person taking a career assessment knows they are going to be making a career choice or actively exploring the world of work.
The top of the diamond signifies the person’s awareness about themselves expands and then narrows to the “C”, representing choice or change. Across the bottom, the person’s awareness of the world of work expands and then narrows to a choice.
The left side of the diamond is called The Exploring Phase. During the exploring phase, the person needs to both explore their self-concept and expand their external awareness of the world of work. The right side is the integration phase during which, the user applies their self-concept and integrates it with their new knowledge of the world of work:Career Assessment – Career Diamond Integration Phase
One way to think about this, is to think of how the counselor can help a person complete each step:
Expanding self-awareness: Examining and identifying traits, preferences, interests, aptitudes, and skills about the person.
Expanding external awareness: Exploring the breadth of the labor market, introducing them to jobs they may not have known existed.
Applying self-concept and Integrating External Awareness: Relate specific traits, preferences, interests, aptitudes, and skills to specific careers, industries or opportunities.
Question no 5.
What is assertive discipline? Explain its principle sand educational implications.
Assertive discipline is a structured, systematic approach designed to assist educators in running an organized, teacher-in-charge classroom environment. Lee and Marlene Canter, when consulting for school systems, found that many teachers were unable to control undesirable behavior that occurred in their classrooms. The Cantors, rightfully so, attributed this to a lack of training in the area of behavior management. Based on their research and the foundations of assertiveness training and applied behavior analysis, they developed a common sense, easy-to-learn approach to help teachers become the captains of their classrooms and positively influence their students’ behavior. Today, it is the most widely used “canned” (prepared/packaged) behavior management program. Assertive discipline has evolved since the mid 70’s from an authoritarian approach to one that is more democratic and cooperative.
The Cantors believe that you, as the teacher, have the right to determine what is best for your students, and to expect compliance. No pupil should prevent you from teaching, or keep another student from learning. Student compliance is imperative in creating and maintaining an effective and efficient learning environment. To accomplish this goal, teachers must react assertively, as opposed to aggressively or non assertively. Assertive teachers react confidently and quickly in situations that require behavior management. They have a few clearly stated classroom rules and give firm, clear, concise directions to students who are in need of outside control. Students who comply are reinforced, whereas those who disobey rules and directions receive negative consequences. Assertive teachers do not see students as adversaries, nor do they use an abrasive, sarcastic, hostile style (a “hostile teacher”). Neither do they react in a passive, inconsistent, timid, non directive manner (a “non-assertive teacher”). Assertive teachers believe that a firm, teacher-in-charge classroom is in the best interests of students. They believe that the students wish to have their behavior directed by the teacher. The Canter’s state that society demands appropriate behavior if one is to be accepted and successful. Therefore, no one benefits when a student is allowed to misbehave. Teachers show their concern for today’s youth when they demand and promote appropriate classroom behavior. Additionally, educators have the right to request and expect assistance from parents and administrators in their efforts.
More than being a director, assertive teachers build positive, trusting relationships with their students and teach appropriate classroom behavior (via direct instruction…describing, modeling, practicing, reviewing, encouraging and rewarding) to those who don’t show it at present. They are demanding, yet warm in interaction, supportive of the youngsters, and respectful when addressing misbehavior. Assertive teachers listen carefully to what their students have to say, speak respectfully to them, and treat everyone fairly (not necessarily equally).
How to Use Assertive Discipline
- Dismiss the thought that there is any acceptable reason for misbehavior (Biologically based misbehavior may be an exception).
- Decide which rules you wish to implement in your classroom. Devise four or five rules that are specific and easily understood by your students. (For more on making rules, see the home page link on “How to create your own behavior management system”)
- Determine negative consequences for noncompliance (You will be providing a consequence EVERY TIME a student misbehaves). Choose three to six negative consequences (a “discipline hierarchy”), each of which is more punitive or restrictive than the previous one. These will be administered if the student continues to misbehave. The Canters recommend that you NOT continue punishing if talking with the youngster will help to defuse the situation. (For more on making and implementing consequences, see the home page link on “How to create your own behavior management system”)
- Determine positive consequences for appropriate behavior. For example, along with verbal praise, you might also include raffle tickets that are given to students for proper behavior. Students write their names on the cut up pieces of paper and drop them into a container for a daily prize drawing. Even if a student is having a bad day, there is a reason to improve…s/he might get a ticket and have a chance at winning the raffle prize. Others might receive notes of praise to be shown to their parents.
Group rewards are also used. A marble might be dropped into a jar for each predetermined interval that the class as a whole has been attentive and respectful. When the jar is full, a special event is held. Some assertive teachers also write a letter of the alphabet on the board for each period of good group behavior. When the letters spell “Popcorn Party” (or some other activity), that event is held.
- Conduct a meeting to inform the students of the program. Explain why rules are needed. List the rules on the board along with the positive and negative consequences. Check for understanding. Review periodically.
- Have the students write the rules and take them home to be signed by the parents and returned (optional depending on age, language of parents, chances of forms being returned, etc.). Attach a message explaining the program and requesting their help.
- Implement the program immediately.
- Become skilled in the use of other assertive discipline techniques:
- Communicate your displeasure with a student’s misbehavior, but then be sure to tell the student what to do. For example: “Bill, stop writing and pass your paper forward.” Notice that the teacher told the student what not to do, but also told the student what to do. Many students continue to display inappropriate behavior when they have been told to discontinue because they do not know what they should be doing. Now that you have given a direction, you can reinforce the student for compliance or punish him or her for noncompliance. Be sure to add emphasis to your directions by using eye contact, hand gestures, and the student’s name.
- Recognize and quickly respond to appropriate behavior. This quick action will encourage the students to display the desired behavior more often. Be aware that some students may need to be reinforced quietly or non-verbally to prevent embarrassment in front of peers.
- Learn to use the “broken record” technique. Continue to repeat your command (a maximum of three times) until the student follows your directions. Do not be sidetracked by the student’s excuses. For example:
Teacher: “Vince, you have work to do. Get away from that window and sit in your seat.”
Student: “But I want to see the cop give that guy a ticket.”
Teacher: “I understand, but I want you to sit down now.”
Student: “‘Just one minute, OK?”
Teacher: “‘No, Vince, I want you to sit down now.”