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How to Teach Kids to Behave in School

by Tiffany Raiford

Your child’s education is one of the most important and most rewarding things he will ever receive. He may not realize it just yet, given the annoyance of waking up so early each morning and being forced to suffer through homework each afternoon, but one day he will appreciate his education and all it offers him. At the moment, however, his feelings about school may be affecting more than just his mood when he wakes up in the morning. If he isn’t behaving well at school, he is causing himself to suffer. As his parent, it's your job to help him learn to behave in school so that he receives the best possible education and does not disrupt his peers from receiving the same.

Look for reasons your child might misbehave in school and talk to her about those reasons, advises the Maryland School Mental Health Alliance. One of the best ways to teach your child to behave in school is to recognize what upsets her and causes her to misbehave or could cause her to misbehave. It could be anything from a teacher she feels does not understand her, to work that she struggles to understand, to too much distraction in the classroom.

Go over acceptable alternative methods for handling the situation with your child if something is upsetting him at school. If he is constantly in trouble for goofing off and not finishing his assignments, talk to him about the situation. You might find out that he’s just bored with the work because it doesn’t challenge him, or even that it challenges him so much he chooses to ignore it and goof off because the work makes him feel stupid. By informing him that he can talk to his teacher about these problems, you can help him understand that there are more acceptable ways to handle instances in which he’s tempted to misbehave.

Provide her with your time and attention when she’s working on homework, as well as all the supplies she needs and a quiet place to work, advises the Centers for Disease Control. When you show your child that you are interested in her schooling, she is less likely to misbehave. If you take it a step further and maintain regular contact with her teacher, you are further encouraging her to behave because she knows the chances are high that you will find out if she does anything otherwise in class.

Tip

  • Discipline your child at home when he misbehaves in school, even if he's already been disciplined in school. It might not make a big difference to him if he is forced to stay in detention, which is a place he can do his homework so he doesn't have to miss out on any fun at home. By disciplining him at home as well, you are making sure he knows that his behavior at school will affect his home life, which could discourage him from misbehaving in the future.

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