About UsSolutionsSupportF.A.Q.'sOur MissionContact UsStoreStore

Tel: 877.725.9626



Support - F.A.Q.'s


Q: Can we use less than 5 steps on the consequence hierarchy? Isn't three strikes enough?

A: I would highly recommend against eliminating steps. The court system and most districts have approved and supported Effective Behavior Management because it affords students due process. I do not believe that three strikes is
sufficient due process for students to be suspended from the learning

Redirects (whammies) are not consequences. They are reminders for students to remain on task.

I believe that every student has a right to a warning. Step 1

I also believe that there must be a minimum of two classroom consequences. Steps 2 and 3.

If a student is being removed from the classroom for misbehavior, they are in reality being suspended from the learning environment. Any time a student is suspended from the learning environment, the parent has a right to know. Step 4.

Removal from the classroom to the (buddy room or) administration is step 5.

1. Warning
2. Teacher consequence (usually 5 minutes time out or 1 minute after class)
3. Teacher consequence (usually 10 minutes time out or 2 minute after class)
4. Parent phone call
5. Buddy room/administration

Q: What do I do with a student who won't do his work? How much time do I give him to follow directions?

A: If a student isn't doing their work or refuses to, first you have to determine if the student can do the work. If you ask them to write their name on a piece of paper and they refuse, it's likely that the student can do it. Therefore not completing the task is misbehavior. However, you cannot give a consequence to a student for not doing their work if they are unable to complete the assignment. This would be an academic issue, not a behavioral one.

Now, if a student refuses to do work that you are 100% sure they are capable of, follow the plan as if it was any other mischevious behavior. First redirect the student, "Mark, please write your name on the paper." Give the student a reasonable amount of time to comply. If they continue to misbehave (by not working), redirect the student again. If they continue to misbehave, give them the third and final redirect with a choice, "Mark, you have a choice, do your work or you're going in the book."

If he continues to misbehave and doesn't do his work, put him in the book and give him a consequence.

But how do we know when to give him the next level consequence? You have to ask yourself, can I teach if Mark isn't doing his work or if he has his head down on his desk? The answer is yes. So teach.

In order to give a student an additional consequence for the same behavior, you have to ask yourself if the behavior is continuous and disruptive. If the student keeps his head down on the desk for the whole period, that is continuous. But it is not disruptive and therefor you can teach.

If he exhibits the same behavior the next day follow the same procedure. After three days of non-working you can implement the Rule of Three and take him to the next level. Within two weeks the student will be at a level four and you can begin to involve the parents, administration, etc.

Q: How might we adapt steps 2 and 3 for P.E.? The challenge is that we have tried to send students to a particular area before, but a teacher must police them or the students leave and wander or play.

A: As with any situation, the students must be taught how to behave in a time out or buddy room situation. Regardless of whether it is in a normal classroom environment, in P.E., on the yard, it is crucial that the behavior be taught, in this case, how to behave in time out. They must also know the consequences for misbehaving while serving a consequence. We can not expect students to do anything that we have not taught them.


Q: What if I make multiple attempts to contact the parents, leave messages, but cannot reach an adult on the phone?

A: It is the teacher's responsibility to make their best effort to contact the parents in the event that the student has reached that level in the consequence hierarchy or any similar situation. That means to make several attempts to call the numbers they have and the numbers on the office emergency card and leave messages when possible.

If unsuccessful, it is my recommendation that the teacher go to an admistrator and say, "I need help getting in touch with the parents of this student. I have done everything I can to get in contact with these parents. I can not be successful with this student unless I have the cooperation of these parents. I need your help." At that point it is the responsibility of the administration to assist the teacher in getting in touch with the family, either by involving a translator, community liason, parent volunteer, assisting them with a home visit, or any other means necessary.


Q: What do we do about tardies?

A: There are two ways to handle tardies. In both cases, we recommend that teachers utilize the Tardy Book located on pages 47-48 in the Effective Behavior Management manual.

Option 1: Follow the plan. Most schools have adopted the rule "Come on time" in one form or another. If a student is late, not only do they sign the tardy book, but they are entered into the Classroom Behavior Log with a consequence. Remember, being tardy is a choice and a behavior. The teacher simply follows the plan and treats the tardy as any other mischievous behavior.

Option 2: The tardy policy mirrors the classroom behavior plan such that tardies are documented in the tardy book and consequences are issued in a similar five-step progression to the classroom plan, i.e.:

1st tardy: Warning
2nd tardy: Classroom consequence issued by the teacher
3rd tardy: Classroom consequence issued by the teacher
4th tardy: Parent phone call
5th tardy: Administrative consequence (potentially progressing from lunch detention to after school detention and/or Saturday school)




Back To Top

Back To Home

© 2007 Salzman Associates