We've said it before: If a teacher doesn’t plan and communicate behavioral expectations for students, the students will guess what constitutes responsible behavior. When students guess how they are supposed to behave, the results are often undesirable. We must explain to students how they are to behave during each and every activity.
Before asking students to begin an activity/assessment they must know how to receive “help.” What if you are working with another student? What resources can they consult on their own? Can they use their notes? Ask a friend? Or, is this a “your brain only” work period? These expectations should be given to students verbally and then posted on the board for reference.
Possible Help Situations:
Only ask students to raise their hand for help if you are available to respond quickly. You risk losing credibility by ignoring a student with a raised hand. Students may then respond by demanding your attention in an undesired way- which is reinforced if they receive a response from the teacher.
Consider the following:
It's also important to set explicit expectations for early finishers. Is there one must-do? Or, are there several may-dos?