21 Strategies to Teach Learners Not to Start Arguments and Fights with Peers

Are you looking for strategies to teach students not to start arguments and fights with peers? If so, keep reading.

1. Teach the student acceptable ways to express displeasure, anger, etc.

2. Minimize the stimuli that contribute to the student’s derogatory remarks or unacceptable gestures.

3. Give the student a quiet space to work (e.g., study table, “private office,” etc.). This should be used as a way to lessen distractions, not as a punishment.

4. Give the student the chance to work with a peer who will be an appropriate model.

5. Separate the student from the peer(s) who is the primary stimulus or focus of the derogatory remarks or unacceptable gestures.

6. Make sure the student knows the logical consequences of unacceptable behavior(e.g., peers choosing not to interact with him/her, exclusion from learning activities, etc.).

7. Make the student find appropriate alternative behaviors after an instance of derogatory remarks or unacceptable gestures.

8. Solidify on-task behavior by providing a full schedule of daily activities. Stop lag time from happening when the student would be free to take part in unacceptable behavior.

9. Minimize the emphasis on competition. Repeated failure may result in anger and frustration that may take the form of derogatory remarks or unacceptable gestures.

10. Place emphasis on individual success or progress rather than “beating” other students.

11. Intervene early and often when the student begins to agitate or provoke peers.

12. Always treat the student with the utmost respect. Talk objectively at all times.

13. Take the student away from the classroom if they are unable to demonstrate self-control. The student should not be allowed to remain in the classroom and be abusive to peers.

14. Provide visibility to and from the student. The teacher and the student should be able to see each other at all times. Make eye contact possible at all times.

15. Notify others (e.g., teachers, school staff members, etc.) of the behavior expected of the student so they will urge appropriate behavior from the student.

16. Take the student away from the learning experience until they can demonstrate appropriate behavior.

17. Do not embarrass the student by giving them orders, requirements, etc., in front of others.

18. Consider using a classroom management app. Click here to view a list of apps that we recommend.

19. Consider using an adaptive behavior management app. Click here to view a list of apps that we recommend.

20. Consider using Alexa to help the student learn to behave appropriately. Click here to read an article that we wrote on the subject.

21. Click here to learn about six bonus strategies for challenging problem behaviors and mastering classroom management.

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