How to Handle Misbehavior in the Classroom

Today we’re going to talk about how to manage misbehavior in the classroom.

When a child is misbehaving, there’s always a reason. Perhaps it’s a medical one, they could be bored or they’re not getting a concept.

Our job as educators is to figure out what’s wrong and to help them. If you don’t do it in a timely manner or if you constantly “nag” at them, you’ll get no where and the issue will worsen over time.

How to Handle Misbehavior in the Classroom

The following four methods, along with the strategies outlined in last week’s article, will help you manage misbehavior while developing a trusting relationship between you and your students.

Actionable Steps:

#1. Have a Chat

Talk to your student and ask the child about what they were doing and the reason behind it. While some children will respond, not all of them will do so before that trust has been built. If this step isn’t working or you haven’t developed that connection yet, use a check-in in paper format that’s anonymous at first and then move toward having students write their names on it.

#2. Adapt a Bit

Look at what your student is capable of doing and what they need support with. Adapt the curriculum to meet their needs. An adaption may look like working in a small group or 1-1 with your students, or having them do fewer questions than the others.

Note that I said adapt and not modify, which requires me to change the curriculum. Modification is a topic for a different day. For now, keep in mind the concept of adaption.

#3. Love the Positive

If you want your children to stay on task and to follow the expectations that you agree upon as a class, you cannot expect to talk about it at the beginning of the school year and leave it. You’ll need to review it every single day at first, then every few days, and then lessen it to every week.

Teaching it will involve discussion but also make sure to demonstrate and practice it with your students.

#4. Reinforce the Behavior

It’s important to reinforce positive behavior and not negative ones. This is easier said than done. Your first instinct will be the reach out and correct the unexpected behavior, but between my previous article and this one, you have plenty of different ways to help your child learn how to correct their behavior.

If you constantly try to correct the negative behavior, those you need your attention, will realize that the way to get it, is to produce unexpected behavior. Instead, praise those who are focused on the task that you’ve asked them to do. In fact, do it loudly and with enthusiasm. If you need to correct the negative behavior, do it quickly and move back to reinforcing the positive behavior.


Let’s recap really quickly. Today, we looked at the following:

  1. The importance of how to handle misbehavior in the classroom.
  2. We looked at four ways to do it: Have a Chat, Adapt a Bit, Love the Positive, Reinforce the Behavior

Additional Thoughts:

I’d love to hear from you. Check out the following image for the question and answer in the comments below:

How to Handle Misbehavior in the Classroom

If in the mean time, if you’re feeling stressed out, overwhelmed and burnout, then I encourage you to check out the following:

Systematic Plan to Super Passionate

Next Steps:

If you’d like additional resources for your classroom here are the three ways you can access them: 1) Free Resource Library; 2) At my store; 3) The Colourful Teaching Club.

If you found this video beneficial, would you do me a favor? Share this with your family, your friends, your loved ones, your co-workers or someone who you think could benefit from this. Thank you!

I’ll see you next Friday at 5:30pm PST.

Until I see you next time, remember to create, experience & teach from the heart.

Take care,


How to Handle Misbehavior in the Classroom
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