Unity Day 2020

Today is #unityday2020. According to Pacer.org, 1 out of every 5 children are bullied. Research indicates that bullying prevention can be successful when students, parents, educators, and community members are involved. 

Students – if you see bullying intervene and tell a trusted adult. If you are being bullied, talk to your parents/guardians and tell a trusted adult at school.

Parents – learn what bullying is and how to recognize the warning signs. If you believe that your child is a victim of bullying, listen to your child and try to find out what is happening.

Educators – work to establish an inclusive and safe learning environment. Respond when bullying happens. 

Community Members – learn what bullying is and what it isn’t. Learn how to respond. 

To learn more about bullying prevention, please visit: 

Wear and share ORANGE  (with us) to show your support of bullying prevention. 





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Coping with a Lack of Control

 A common frustration for many right now is the feeling that life is out of control. We can’t control the fact that we are in the middle of a pandemic. We can’t control when school opens again, or how many days our children will attend. We can’t control what’s going to happen, in general. We don’t KNOW what is going to happen. In the words of that great sage Yogi Berra “Predictions are hard to make, especially about the future.” That being said, what can we do to bring back some sense of control?     

Stephen Covey, author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, is credited with developing the idea of the circle of concern and the circle of influence. The circle of concern contains everything that people could be possibly worried about, whether they can have an impact on it or not. The circle of influence is much smaller, that is, it consists of things we can change or have an influence on. He suggests that we focus our attention on things which we can change.  Easier said than done, but worth the effort. The below graphic was graciously shared by Kathy Fitzjeffries, Safe and Drug Free Schools Program Manager.

The below graphic suggests some additional ways to take back the control which we do have, and hopefully feel a little bit better.

Pick a few of these things and give them a try this week! Let us know if they help give you a better sense of control.
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Cyberbullying & Remote Learning

The rapid growth of technology in our society has led to a new type of bullying…cyberbullying.  A surprisingly high number of students report being a victim of this type of bullying. According to a 2019 report from the CDC, cyberbullying among public school students is highest for middle school at 33%, followed by high school at 30%. Even 5% of elementary students report having been cyberbullied. Due to the impact of Covid-19 in 2020, many schools have had to switch to remote or distance learning. This situation has increased opportunities for cyberbullying since most learning occurs in virtual classrooms and other online platforms.  

Children and teenagers are often more tech-savvy than their parents/guardians which can make it challenging to monitor their online behavior. Like other forms of bullying, cyberbullying can cause significant stress and emotional problems for the child, so it is important for parents/guardians to know the different ways children and teenagers can be bullied online. Cyberbullying includes but is not limited to circulating or sending photos, sending or posting hurtful messages, hacking someone else’s account, pretending to be someone else online, and sending or posting threats. Cyberbullying can occur on social media platforms, through text messages/email/instant messaging, within online forums such as chat rooms and message boards, and even in online gaming communities.

Although all bullying involves intentional, often repetitive, hurtful behavior toward another person or group, according to Pacer.org, cyberbullying presents several additional challenges. First, given the easy access to technology, cyberbullying can happen any time of the day. It is also more difficult to detect because it isn’t as overt as physical or in-person verbal bullying. Since cyberbullying can be done anonymously, the victim may not know who the bully is, so no one is held accountable. Another unique feature of cyberbullying is that it enables the bully to spread information quickly to large groups. This makes it difficult to contain or stop negative information from being disseminated. Cyberbullying is also challenging because it is conducted at a distance from the victim and therefore, the bully may not see the harm it causes. In a sense, technology distances bullies from the damaging effects of their actions. Finally, the impact of cyberbullying can be permanent because it is difficult to remove or delete information once it is shared on the internet. 

So how can parents/guardians prevent and protect their children from cyberbullying without banning them from technology altogether? According to Stopbullying.gov, it is important for parents/guardians to initiate open and honest conversations with their kids about appropriate digital behavior. Those discussions should include guidance on how to view/post content, which apps they can and cannot use, and the parameters around how parents/guardians will check in/monitor their online use, browsing history, and communications. Other tips for parents/guardians include reviewing or re-setting your child’s phone location and privacy settings, following or “friending” your child on social media sites, staying up to date with the latest apps, online platforms, and digital slang, and knowing your child’s usernames and passwords. Parents/guardians  may also want to consider software options and apps that are available to help them limit/restrict content, block domains, and/or view online activities. 

Even if parents/guardians are following all of this advice, it is still critically important that they be aware of possible warning signs that their child is being cyberbullied. Sometimes the very best monitoring efforts might miss a potential problem. According to Stopbullying.org, some of the most common signs include:

  • Noticeable increases or decreases in device use, including texting.
  • Exhibits emotional responses (laughter, anger, upset) to what is happening on their device.
  • Hides their screen or device when others are near, and avoids discussion about what they are doing on their device.
  • Shuts down social media accounts or new ones appear.
  • Starts to avoid social situations, even those that were previously enjoyed.
  • Becomes withdrawn or depressed, or loses interest in people and activities.

So what should parents/guardians do if they discover cyberbullying? According to Stopbullying.gov, the most important step is to document and report the behavior so that it can be addressed. Instead of responding to or forwarding cyberbullying messages, block the person who is cyberbullying. More specific and complete information regarding how and where to report cyberbullying can be found at Stopbullying.gov. During this time of remote instruction, it is more important than ever to communicate with your child’s school if you suspect cyberbullying is occurring. To anonymously report an incident of bullying, the WSFCS has set up an anonymous bullying tip line. Visit Bullying Tip Line or call 336-703-4193.

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September is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Month

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) is an umbrella term used to describe the range of effects that can occur in an individual with prenatal alcohol exposure. These effects can have lifelong implications including physical, mental, behavior, and/or learning issues.


The term FASD encompasses the following conditions:

  • Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS)
    • FAS is on the most severe end of the FASD spectrum. It describes people with the greatest alcohol effects, causing signs and symptoms so distinct that the diagnosis is based on special measurements and findings in each of the 3 following areas:

      • Three specific facial abnormalities: smooth philtrum (the area between nose and upper lip), thin upper lip, small palpebral fissures (the horizontal eye openings)

      • Growth deficit (lower than average height, weight or both)

      • Central nervous system (CNS) abnormalities (structural, neurologic, functional, or a combination of these)

  • Partial Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (pFAS)
    • When a person does not meet the full diagnostic criteria for FAS but has a history of prenatal alcohol exposure and some of the facial abnormalities, as well as a growth problem or CNS abnormalities that person is considered to have partial FAS (pFAS)
  • Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder (ARND)
    • People with ARND do not have abnormal facial features or growth problems, but do have problems with how their brain and nervous system were formed as well as how they function. These individuals may have:

      In particular, a 2011 federally convened committee that reviewed the science noted that these children are most likely to have problems with neurocognitive development, adaptive functioning, and or behavior regulation.

  • Neurobehavioral Disorder Associated with Pre-Natal Alcohol Exposure (ND-PAE)
    • In addition to confirmed prenatal alcohol exposure, these individuals have impairment of neurocognition, self-regulation, and adaptive functioning. ND-PAE combines deficits is these three areas in conjunction with the following:

      • Evidence of prenatal alcohol exposure

      • Childhood onset of symptoms

      • Significant distress or impairment in social, academic, occupational, or other important area of function

  • Alcohol-Related Birth Defects (ARBD)
    • People with ARBD have problems with how some of their organs were formed and or how they function, including:

      • Heart

      • Kidney

      • Bones (possibly the spine)

      • Hearing

      • Vision

      These individuals also may have one of the other FASDs.

FASDs can happen only when a pregnant woman consumes alcohol. The alcohol crosses the placenta and enters the baby’s blood where it can damage the developing brain and other organs leading to an FASD. Developing babies have the same blood alcohol concentration as their mother, but they lack the ability to process or metabolize alcohol. 

No amount of alcohol use is known to be safe for a developing baby before birth. Any amount of alcohol, even a glass of wine, passes from the mother to the developing baby. Wine, beer, or distilled spirits (vodka, rum, tequila, etc.) all pose a risk. FASDs are 100% preventable if a woman does not drink alcohol during pregnancy.

Alcohol causes more harm than heroin or cocaine during pregnancy. The Institute of Medicine says, “Of all the substances of abuse (including cocaine, heroin, and marijuana), alcohol produces by far the most serious neurobehavioral effects in the fetus.” 

1 in 100 babies have FASD, nearly the same rate as Autism.  FASD is more prevalent than Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, SIDS, Cystic Fibrosis, and Spina Bifida combined. Alcohol use during pregnancy is the leading preventable cause of birth defects, developmental disabilities, and learning disabilities.

The National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (NOFAS) has created some fact sheets to educate people about FASDs. Some of these fact sheets that may be of interest are:

No one treatment is right for every child, as FASD and its constellation of symptoms differ from one child to another. FASDs need a medical home to provide, coordinate, and facilitate all the necessary medical, behavioral, social, and educational services.

  • Many types of available treatments include but are not limited to:
    • Developmental services
    • Educational interventions
    • Behavior modification
    • Parent training
    • Social skills training
    • Medications and other medical therapies
    • Transition planning
    • Advocacy in school and the workplace
    • Referral for community support services
    • Coordination across the specialists, partners, and needed supports
    • Primary care in a high quality medical home setting with care integration

Treatment plans should be adaptable to the child’s and family’s needs, plus include close monitoring and follow-up.

FASDs last a lifetime. There is no cure for FASDs, but identifying children with FASDs as early as possible can help them reach their potential. Research has shown that early identification and enrollment in treatment can significantly improve an affected child’s development and life.

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The Grief of Adjusting to “The New Normal”

Way back in the spring, when Covid-19 began, we were all in a state of shock. What do you mean my children are learning at home? What do you mean my job is in the dining room instead of my office? What do you mean I can’t go out to dinner or to the movies? At that time, I read an article called “ That Discomfort You’re Feeling is Grief” (published March 23, 2020) in the Harvard Business Review. I recently reread this article and it still resonates with me. The beginning of the school year has always been full of  joy and anticipation,as well as a healthy amount of anxiety. This year, I don’t think I’m alone in feeling an unusually high level of anxiety. This year is not starting as any of us would like it to. I have more questions than we have answers. When will my kids go back to school? When will I go to work? How do I balance all of this? When will the virus let up and let me get on with my ordinary life? So many questions! 

In this article, (That Discomfort You’re Feeling is Grief) the author interviews grief expert Dr. David Kessler, founder of the website Grief.com, who describes several common grief experiences. He notes that it’s important to acknowledge and discuss the grief that we are feeling because we will eventually find meaning in these experiences. He describes the “collective loss of normalcy,” along with the feeling that the world has changed, and not for the better. Many people are experiencing the fear of economic loss and the loss of connection to others. Dr. Kessler also mentioned something called “anticipatory grief.” He describes anticipatory grief as “the feeling we get about what the feeling holds when we are uncertain.” My goodness, there is a lot of uncertainty right now!  

The question is, how do we handle all of this grief?  First, he recommends trying to understand the stages of grief.  Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, an American-Swiss psychiatrist, first defined these stages of grief in 1969.Typically, the stages of grief are as follows: denial, anger, bargaining, sadness and finally, acceptance. During Dr. Kessler’s later work with Dr. Kubler-Ross, a 6th stage was later added, finding meaning. Dr. Kessler does point out, however, that the stages are often not linear. This graphic ( used with the permission of Caring Choices)  illustrates a more common grief progression. People don’t move smoothly between the stages, and that’s ok!

For handling this feeling of anticipatory grief, Dr. Kessler recommends acknowledging it for what it is, which is anxiety. He notes that trying to ignore these feelings isn’t effective, and probably won’t work anyway. He recommends striving for balance in our emotions and feelings about what might happen.  He suggests balancing our thoughts by picturing the best possible outcome, even when our minds want to run to the worst.  He also suggests that when fears of the future loom, we should try to come into the present. He recommends mindfulness practices, such as naming five things in the room or paying attention to immediate sensations. 

A good example of this immediate mindfulness is provided by Destress Monday:

Dr. Kessler suggests focusing on the things which you can control, such as your own behaviors in staying safe (e.g., handwashing, maintaining distance, wearing a mask). He also advises focusing less on the behaviors of others, which we probably can’t control anyway.

Dr. Kessler recommends that we “stock up on compassion.”  Many are struggling with their feelings of grief and anxiety, and may act in ways which aren’t typical.  People may be “Touchous,” as my grandma used to say, and need extra understanding from us if they snap or are moody.  He also encourages us to remember that this is temporary.  Although this uncomfortable situation may feel like it will last forever, it will not! (I need to keep telling myself this.)  

Finally, for people who are overwhelmed, Dr. Kessler recommends naming our feelings of grief.  It has been beneficial for me to acknowledge that I am struggling. Admitting to others that I had to quit watching the news because I couldn’t stop crying or because it was keeping me awake at night was healing.  Every single time I shared these feelings, the person I was talking to acknowledged similar feelings. It was comforting to know that I was not alone.  There is an old but accurate saying,  “A burden shared is halved.”  According to Dr. Kessler, we should allow ourselves to experience the feelings we are having without trying to talk ourselves out of them. He notes that too often people fear that if they admit to ‘bad feelings,’ they will be overrun.  But he also says, “The truth is a feeling that moves through us. We feel it and then we go on to the next feeling.”

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Suicide Prevention – Scope of the Problem

 September is National Suicide Prevention Month. The Suicide Prevention Lifeline uses #BeThe1To – a message to help spread the word about what we can do to promote healing, help and give hope to save lives and prevent suicide.

Scope of the Problem

A recent Harris Poll national survey found that 81% of respondents believe that suicide prevention needs to be a national priority because of COVID-19. 93% of those surveyed believe that suicide can be prevented and 95% said that they would act if someone closed to them was in crisis. Most (69%) were able to list barriers to doing something, including: not knowing what to say; feeling they don’t have enough knowledge; and not feeling comfortable with the topic. According to the CDC (2020), long-term school closure may lead to an increase in mental health issues as students have fewer opportunities to engage with each other. Adolescents with pre-existing mental illness may be more greatly impacted and not have the same mental health services as available due to school closure.

Suicidal ideation is a major mental health risk among adolescents. Among adolescents ages 12 to 17, suicide is the second leading cause of deaths (The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2016). The CDC also reports an increase of suicidal thoughts and suicide rates among adolescents over time. The 2019 Child Health Report Card highlighted the following:

  • The rate of youth suicide has doubled in the previous decade.
  • Factors leading to suicidal thoughts include mental health, trauma, persistent stress, family violence, bullying.
  • 12% of heterosexual youth reported seriously considering suicide compared to 43% of LGBTQ youth. 
  • African American youth were twice as likely as white youth to have attempted suicide in the past year and were significantly less likely to get treatment for depression.
It is worth noting that although African Americans may have lower suicide rates based on national statistics, there is concern about the rising rates among black youth. Historically, the undue burden of trauma and inequity among this population has received little attention.
Results of the 2019 WS/FC High School Youth Risk Behavior Survey, in comparison to 2017 results, show an increase in the percentage of students who reported that they (their): 
  • felt sad or hopeless continuously for two weeks or more in the past 12 months 
  • seriously considered attempting suicide during the past 12 months 
  • made a suicide plan during the past 12 months 
  • attempted suicide during the past 12 months 
  • suicide attempt in the past 12 months resulted in injury that required treatment by nurse or doctor
More Black youth reported planning suicide (19.4%) and making an attempt (16.2%) compared to White (14.4%, 7.7% respectively) and Hispanic-Latino youth (9.0%, 13.4% respectively). 6.0% of Hispanic-Latino youth reported an attempt requiring medical treatment compared to 4.9% Black and 3.1% White youth. The percentage of females reporting on all issues, concerns, and indicators is higher than males.
What to Look For
In a physical or virtual environment, youth suicide warning signs remain the same. These include:
  • Talking about or making plans for suicide
  • Expressing hopelessness about the future
  • Displaying severe/overwhelming emotional pain or distress
  • Showing worrisome behavioral cues or marked changes in behavior, including withdrawal from or change in social connections/situations, changes in sleep (increased or decreased), anger or hostility that seems out of character or out of context, recent increased agitation or irritability
In situations where there is forced separation, look for someone expressing feelings of isolation and interpersonal concerns related to social distancing. Withdrawing or shutting down might be manifested in someone not engaging in social media as usual or staying in their rooms. It is important to pay attention and listen to what the person is saying, especially the words and the tone of voice.
Resources and Supports
WS/FCS has specific protocols and procedures in place to respond to and manage suicide risk. School staff should reach out to their school-based mental health professionals (counselor, social worker, or psychologist) with any concerns. Parents may also communicate with these professionals or their child’s primary medical provider.
Note: Some of the information in this blog was previously shared by the author in the North Carolina School Psychology Association guidance document Crisis Response in a Virtual Environment. 
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Tips for Handling Problematic Behaviors Remotely

 Congratulations! You’ve jumped in to the challenge of providing synchronous remote instruction this new school year. Navigating the new technology and this new way of teaching can be truly anxiety provoking.  This is truly a “new normal” (Have I said “new” enough times?)  You’ve faced technology issues completely out of your control such as NCEDCloud failures and Zoom outages.  During those times when you have been able to provide synchronous instruction, hopefully your students have been attending and participating, and things have been going smoothly.  

However, some of you may have already started experiencing some problematic behaviors from your students during synchronous instructional times. Maybe a student has used inappropriate language or gestures either in the chat or by unmuting themselves. Or you may have observed a student teasing another student either in the chat or video. Managing problem behaviors can be difficult and challenging when students are physically in class with you.  However, managing problem behaviors during remote instruction can definitely pose a different challenge.  Hopefully you have not experienced these concerns but if you have, PBISapps.org has provided  this resource which provides suggestions for handling problem behaviors remotely. 

They recommend the following 4 step plan to assist you in addressing student behaviors remotely.

Step 1: Take a Breath

The author states; “When misbehaviors happen in your virtual settings, the first step to responding is to take a breath. Collect yourself. Make sure your reaction is rooted in the student’s behavior and not your own stress. For me, I stop and take a beat. I notice my heart racing and an overall nervous feeling in my body. I take a deep breath and make sure the next words out of my mouth happen in a calm tone. Taking a few seconds to do this step sets you up for what comes next.”

Step 2: Reteach Expectations

The author noted; “Up until now, most students’ online interactions involved social media, gaming, and text messages with friends. Doing school online is new. Your expectations related to language and behavior are probably pretty different from how they’ve used online spaces before. Your students are familiar with your classroom expectations. Do they know your expectations for distance learning? …

Teaching expectations once won’t magically create a perfect classroom. Remember, distance learning is different for everyone and we’re all bound to mess up. When you see misbehaviors, particularly when those misbehaviors happen with lots of students, take the time to reteach the expectation. Remind folks about how you expect them to use the technology, what to do with their microphones when they enter a meeting, how to use the chat to enhance the lesson rather than distract from it, etc. Sometimes a reminder is all anyone needs for new expectations to stick.”

Step 3: Get Curious

The author reminds us that; “Remote locations carry the same types of motivations as their physical counterparts: To get or to avoid something. Before deciding to document the behavior with a referral, put the behavior in context.”  

They note the value of developing a hypothesis or summary statement, which includes the antecedents (what occurs before the behavior), the behavior, and the maintaining consequences (what occurs after the behavior). They provided the following example and considerations:

“During [insert routine], when [insert trigger], the student [insert observable behavior] and as a result [insert consequence].

During our large class meeting, when I gave instructions to the class, Alan spammed the chat with cat memes and as a result other students reacted with emojis and photos of their own.

The sentence makes it a little more obvious – Alan’s cat memes get him tons of attention from his peers. With that small detail, the solutions you implement can target his motivation instead of work against it. 

Beyond typical motivating factors, every student’s circumstance away from school is different. Food insecurity, internet access, familiarity with technology, support from adults at home, it all affects a student’s behavior in class. 

Is Bryan bored and looking for something interesting to do?

Does Lydia need attention after being away from her friends? 

Is a slow internet connection making it difficult for someone to engage in the lesson?

When you notice misbehaviors, get curious why it’s happening. Maybe something a student did really warrants a referral. It’s also possible students need alternative support given their specific remote circumstances.”

Step 4: Document

The author recommends documenting minor and major problem behaviors.  They note;

“In the end, some behaviors warrant documentation. With students out of your physical presence, you won’t likely see the same behaviors as a typical day in school. Disruption looks different. You won’t see students pushing each other on the playground or find too many dress code violations on Zoom…although I could be proven wrong. You might even see some behaviors every day that you never saw in your classroom. 

Each problem behavior has a definition. What those behaviors look like in remote settings could be different. If you haven’t already, take the time to consider the misbehaviors you see right now. Talk with other teachers and your school-wide team.”

They also provided an example of one way to categorize behaviors documented; as well as various additional helpful links.  

So this is definitely a “new normal”, (Had to say it one more time ?).  But remember, you know how to manage behaviors and did it all the time with students in your “brick and mortar” classroom.  Hopefully these tips will provide beginning steps to help you carry those skills over, in order to manage student behaviors in your virtual classroom. 

Read more

Tips for Handling Problematic Behaviors Remotely

 Congratulations! You’ve jumped in to the challenge of providing synchronous remote instruction this new school year. Navigating the new technology and this new way of teaching can be truly anxiety provoking.  This is truly a “new normal” (Have I said “new” enough times?)  You’ve faced technology issues completely out of your control such as NCEDCloud failures and Zoom outages.  During those times when you have been able to provide synchronous instruction, hopefully your students have been attending and participating, and things have been going smoothly.  

However, some of you may have already started experiencing some problematic behaviors from your students during synchronous instructional times. Maybe a student has used inappropriate language or gestures either in the chat or by unmuting themselves. Or you may have observed a student teasing another student either in the chat or video. Managing problem behaviors can be difficult and challenging when students are physically in class with you.  However, managing problem behaviors during remote instruction can definitely pose a different challenge.  Hopefully you have not experienced these concerns but if you have, PBISapps.org has provided  this resource which provides suggestions for handling problem behaviors remotely. 

They recommend the following 4 step plan to assist you in addressing student behaviors remotely.

Step 1: Take a Breath

The author states; “When misbehaviors happen in your virtual settings, the first step to responding is to take a breath. Collect yourself. Make sure your reaction is rooted in the student’s behavior and not your own stress. For me, I stop and take a beat. I notice my heart racing and an overall nervous feeling in my body. I take a deep breath and make sure the next words out of my mouth happen in a calm tone. Taking a few seconds to do this step sets you up for what comes next.”

Step 2: Reteach Expectations

The author noted; “Up until now, most students’ online interactions involved social media, gaming, and text messages with friends. Doing school online is new. Your expectations related to language and behavior are probably pretty different from how they’ve used online spaces before. Your students are familiar with your classroom expectations. Do they know your expectations for distance learning? …

Teaching expectations once won’t magically create a perfect classroom. Remember, distance learning is different for everyone and we’re all bound to mess up. When you see misbehaviors, particularly when those misbehaviors happen with lots of students, take the time to reteach the expectation. Remind folks about how you expect them to use the technology, what to do with their microphones when they enter a meeting, how to use the chat to enhance the lesson rather than distract from it, etc. Sometimes a reminder is all anyone needs for new expectations to stick.”

Step 3: Get Curious

The author reminds us that; “Remote locations carry the same types of motivations as their physical counterparts: To get or to avoid something. Before deciding to document the behavior with a referral, put the behavior in context.”  

They note the value of developing a hypothesis or summary statement, which includes the antecedents (what occurs before the behavior), the behavior, and the maintaining consequences (what occurs after the behavior). They provided the following example and considerations:

“During [insert routine], when [insert trigger], the student [insert observable behavior] and as a result [insert consequence].

During our large class meeting, when I gave instructions to the class, Alan spammed the chat with cat memes and as a result other students reacted with emojis and photos of their own.

The sentence makes it a little more obvious – Alan’s cat memes get him tons of attention from his peers. With that small detail, the solutions you implement can target his motivation instead of work against it. 

Beyond typical motivating factors, every student’s circumstance away from school is different. Food insecurity, internet access, familiarity with technology, support from adults at home, it all affects a student’s behavior in class. 

Is Bryan bored and looking for something interesting to do?

Does Lydia need attention after being away from her friends? 

Is a slow internet connection making it difficult for someone to engage in the lesson?

When you notice misbehaviors, get curious why it’s happening. Maybe something a student did really warrants a referral. It’s also possible students need alternative support given their specific remote circumstances.”

Step 4: Document

The author recommends documenting minor and major problem behaviors.  They note;

“In the end, some behaviors warrant documentation. With students out of your physical presence, you won’t likely see the same behaviors as a typical day in school. Disruption looks different. You won’t see students pushing each other on the playground or find too many dress code violations on Zoom…although I could be proven wrong. You might even see some behaviors every day that you never saw in your classroom. 

Each problem behavior has a definition. What those behaviors look like in remote settings could be different. If you haven’t already, take the time to consider the misbehaviors you see right now. Talk with other teachers and your school-wide team.”

They also provided an example of one way to categorize behaviors documented; as well as various additional helpful links.  

So this is definitely a “new normal”, (Had to say it one more time ?).  But remember, you know how to manage behaviors and did it all the time with students in your “brick and mortar” classroom.  Hopefully these tips will provide beginning steps to help you carry those skills over, in order to manage student behaviors in your virtual classroom. 

Read more