22 Tricks for Teaching Students to Respond Appropriately to Constructive Criticism

Are you looking for tricks for teaching students to respond appropriately to construction criticism? If so, keep reading.

1. Let logical consequences happen when the learner fails to respond properly to constructive criticism (e.g., make highly reinforcing learning activities contingent upon responding properly to redirection in academic and social situations).

2. Make sure that attention is not inadvertently given to the learner for failing to respond properly to constructive criticism (i.e., remove attention from the learner when they fail to respond properly to redirection in academic and social situations if the attention is reinforcing their unacceptable behavior).

3. Give sufficient time for the learner to respond properly to constructive criticism.

4. Provide instructions concisely.

5. Support the learner in responding properly to constructive criticism (e.g., help the learner correct one or two things to get them started).

6. Create subsequent tasks to be performed the next day based on errors the learner makes rather than requiring instant correction of work done incorrectly.

7. Do not criticize when correcting the learner; be honest yet compassionate. Never cause the learner to feel negatively about themselves.

8. Intervene early and often when there is a problem to prevent more severe problems from happening.

9. Always treat the learner with the utmost respect. Talk objectively at all times.

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

11. Make sure that your remarks are in the form of constructive criticism rather than criticism that can be perceived as personal, menacing, etc. (e.g., instead of saying, “You always make the same mistakes.” say, “A better way to do that might be … “).

12. Praise those students in the classroom who respond properly to constructive criticism.

13. Create classroom rules: • Complete every assignment. • Complete assignments quietly. • Remain in your seat. • Finish tasks. • Meet task expectations. Examine rules often. Praise students for following the rules.

14. Talk with the learner to explain(a) what the learner is doing wrong (e.g., yelling, cursing, making derogatory remarks, crying, etc.) and (b) what the learner should be doing (e.g., asking for instructions, help, clarification, etc.).

15. Reward others for accepting the errors they make.

16. Let the learner attempt something new in private before doing so in front of others.

17. Give constructive criticism in a private setting rather than in front of others.

18. Praise the learner for responding appropriately to constructive criticism: (a) give the learner a concrete reward (e.g., privileges such as leading the line, handing out learning materials, 10 minutes of free time, etc.) or (b) give the learner an informal reward (e.g., praise, handshake, smile, etc.).

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

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

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

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

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