Strategies for creating
a supportive environment for at-risk students
- Consistency, Consistency, Consistency.
This is especially important for the at-risk student. Many children
may anticipate inconsistency and may test you until they are able to
trust your responses.
- Develop a set of written expectations
you can live with and enforce. Allow students to participate in the
development of these expectations so they can take ownership and buy
into the program.
- Be patient with yourself and
- Model and provide opportunities
for practice of expectations and procedures.
- Post agendas, time schedules and
- Make parents your allies. Contact
early in the year with positive statements only. The parents are more
likely to support you if they feel you care about the child and respect
the family values.
- Provide activities for the student
to become immediately engaged in learning upon entering the classroom.
Be sure the task is engaging and provides opportunities for success
for all students.
- Take attendance using your seating
chart while the students are engaged in their morning task.
- Keep your talk short. Provide
instructions and then allow the students to get right to work. Circulate
during work time to provide additional instructions. Give support and
encouragement for on task behaviors.
- Break the class period into two
or three different activities. Plan for each activity to flow smoothly
into the next.
- Keep all students actively involved.
If one student is giving a presentation, involve the other students
in evaluating. Expect to model and provide guidance for the evaluation
- Discipline individual students
quietly and privately. Never engage in a disciplinary conversation across
- Keep your sense of perspective
and your sense of humor.
- Teach and model expected behavior
for the following routines:
o Entering the classroom
o Attendance/announcements/morning routine
o Teacher directed instruction
o Independent seatwork
o Cooperative groups
o Taking tests
o Center activities
o Movement within the classroom
o Lining up
o Putting away materials/clean up
o Leaving the classroom