How to use a behaviour chart as a positive tool
I reflected on my own practice and tried to pinpoint actions I had taken to make sure my learners see a behaviour chart as a positive tool in the classroom. Here’s what I came up with:
Explain why we have a behaviour chart
The link between good behaviour and effective learning isn’t as obvious to children as it may be to adults. Introducing the concept and explaining the reasons behind the behaviour chart meant that my class understood why it was there, and how it could help them.
Give children the chance to redeem themselves
I made the consequences for moving up and down a colour clear and explained that if they reached yellow, they could be moved back up to green by displaying good behaviour. The idea of redemption is very important!
I made an effort to spot children on yellow and find something I could give specific praise for — usually they were back up to green within ten minutes.
Make sure that the children agree on the rules
The actions which lead to names going up and down are agreed, typed, printed, and signed by every adult and child in the room to ensure consistency and clarity. A child has two very clear warnings before their name moved down on the behaviour chart.
Speak to children privately
When a child does need to be moved down, I call them over to speak to me privately and to make sure they don’t feel ashamed in front of their peers. On one occasion, I noticed another child commenting on who was on yellow, so we spoke about how that might make the other child feel and I reminded them that the chart was there to help.
At the end of the day, recap and reset
At the end of the day, any lower names should be put back to the starting position. Give the children who have their names moved up house points, stickers, and praise after you’ve discussed what they’ve done.