Are you looking for quick tips for getting students to follow directions and instructions? If so, keep reading.
1. Give the student a selection of tasks, requiring them to select a minimum number from the total (e.g., present the student with 10 academic tasks from which 6 must be finished that day).
2. Get the student to orally repeat directions, explanations, or instructions after they have been given to reinforce retention.
3. Assist the student with the first few things on a task. As the student shows success, slowly lessen the amount of help over time.
4. Give alternatives to the traditional format for instructions (e.g., record instructions, summarize instructions, have peers give instructions, etc.).
5. Select various people (e.g., peer, paraprofessional, friend, etc.) to reinforce the student when they receive/read instructions before starting a task.
6. Make the student ask permission from the teacher to begin a task.
7. Give the student shorter tasks but given more regularly.
8. Teach the student directions/instructions (e.g., listen carefully, write down essential points, ask for clarification, wait until all instructions are received before beginning).
9. Stand in proximity to the student when giving instructions.
10. Teach the student to recognize when they are becoming overanxious and beginning things before receiving instructions.
11. Select a peer or volunteer to help the student begin a task.
12. Urge the student to manage their everyday lives as if they were self-employed. This should increase their motivation to finish projects successfully.
13. Get the student to outline, underline, or highlight essential information in printed learning materials.
14. Teach and have the student practice listening for crucial information when they are being given instructions or receiving information (e.g., write down main points, ideas, step-by-step instructions, etc.).
15. Get the student to proofread all their work before submitting it.
16. Get the student to highlight essential information in written instructions prior to beginning a task.
17. Show tasks in the most exciting and attractive manner possible.
18. Give the student self-checking learning materials to check work privately, reducing the fear of public failure.
19. Establish a positive example by dealing in a socially acceptable way with situations that require you to sit through instructions.
20. Along with instructions, give an incentive statement (e.g., “If you wait to begin your work, I will come around to help you with the first problem, etc.).
21. Consider using a classroom management app to help the student learn to follow directions and instructions. Click here to view a list of apps that we recommend.
22. Consider using an adaptive behavior management app to help the student learn to follow directions and instructions. Click here to view a list of apps that we recommend.
23. Consider using Alexa to help the student learn to follow directions and instructions. Click here to read an article that we wrote on the subject.
24. Click here to learn about six bonus strategies for challenging problem behaviors and mastering classroom management.