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Page history last edited by Martha Hickson 12 years, 4 months ago



Misbehavior presents a discipline challenge for the classroom teacher. Students can disrupt lessons, distract the teacher and each other, and intimidate teachers and peers, short-circuiting the learning process for themselves and classmates.


Charles defines misbehavior as “intentional behavior that runscontrary to class agreements”; it can be characterized as benign disruption, withdrawal from learning, immorality and indecency, or hostile confrontation (138-39). 


Charles lists specific reasons for student misbehavior (139-40):


  • Pushing the limits
  • Mimicking each other
  • Showing intense curiosity
  • Craving attention
  • Wanting power
  • Feeling bored or frustrated
  • Acting out a bad mood
  • Reacting when dignity is threatened
  • Bringing outside disagreements into the classroom
  • Manifesting an egocentric personality


Teacher behaviors

Teachers can bring into the classroom specific behaviors that set a negative tone. An autocratic stance; a need to exert control over students; and a tired, auto-pilot approach to teaching sow seeds for student misbehaviors. Teacher misbehaviors include:


  • Inducing fearfulness
  • Denigrating students
  • Being demanding and abrasive
  • Modeling poor behavior
  • Failing to make classes interesting and worthwhile 


Charles suggests that teachers become aware of these tendencies and work to take a more positive tack. He proposes that teachers learn to prevent misbehavior, create a dynamic classroom, and involve students as partners in decision-making.


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