How can I increase on task behavior? What can I do to encourage students to
follow directions right away? Effective behavior narration begins by giving clear directions and then acknowledging the students who follow them!
Check out the example below:
“When I clap three times, you’ll put your morning work in your folder. Then, you’ll put your folder back in your desk. In the end, only your pencil will be on your desk. This transition should take us about 15 seconds."
While giving these directions, collect eye contact. When you are confident students understand, give the start signal (i.e. clap three times).
Immediately, begin to identify individuals (or groups) who are following the instructions and briefly describe their actions to the class.
Note: Elementary students typically appreciate positive individual recognition, while older students may prefer group praise.
“Darius and Trina are getting started right away.”
“Ronnie and Jasmine are working on their multiplication assignment.”
“Jalen and Renee are getting started, showing a lot of teamwork.”
As students are working, continually narrate the positive behaviors you want to see and increase.
“The people at my table are ready. Austin is ready. Leah is now ready and I appreciate that.”
"Group three is deep in thought over the exit ticket."
"Table one is putting their folders away."
"Table two has clear desks- except for their pencil."
This creates behavioral momentum, reinforces on task behavior, and prompts compliance with teacher directions- because students want to be recognized!
Remember, what you pay attention to grows. Positively acknowledge any behavior you'd like to be repeated!