23 Ways to Teach Students to Follow Classroom Rules

Are you looking for ways to teach students to follow classroom rules? If so, keep reading.

1. Provide consistent rules, routine (schedule), and general expectations of conduct and procedure.

2. Take the learner away from the learning experience until they can demonstrate acceptable behavior and self-control.

3. Help the learner find specific rules they have difficulty following and make these areas goals for behavior improvement.

4. Separate the learner from the peer(s) who stimulates their unacceptable behavior.

5. Make sure that rules and behavior expectations are consistent throughout the school and classrooms.

6. Along with instructions, give an incentive statement (e.g., “On occasions where you finish your math, you may go outside to play.” or “You may have free time after you finish your work.”).

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

8. Prior to beginning a new learning experience, make sure the learner knows the classroom rules.

9. Teach the learner to think before acting (e.g., ask themselves, “What is happening?” “What am I doing?” “What should I do?” “What will be best for me?”).

10. Assess the appropriateness of the designated task to ascertain (a) if the task is too easy, (b) if the task is too complicated, and (c) if the duration of time scheduled to finish the task is sufficient.

11. Connect with parents (e.g., notes home, phone calls, etc.) to disseminate information about the learner’s progress. The parents may reinforce the learner at home for following the rules of the classroom.

12. Give the learner a list of rules and/or behavior expectations.

13. Praise the learner for following the rules of the classroom: (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.).

14. Praise the learner for following the rules of the classroom based on the duration of time the learner can be successful. As the learner shows success, slowly increase the duration of time required for reinforcement.

15. 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.

16. Talk with the learner to explain(a) what the learner is doing wrong (e.g., failing to follow classroom rules) and (b) what the learner should be doing (e.g., following the rules of the classroom).

17. Draft an agreement with the learner stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., following classroom rules) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

18. Praise those students who follow the rules of the classroom.

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.

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

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

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