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COMMENT


Helping your pupils towards positive behaviour


In this month’s column (written before the January 2021 lockdown), GRAHAM COOPER, Chief Marketing Officer at Juniper Education discusses time-saving behaviour management strategies.


As all teachers know, the way a child is feeling is often reflected in their behaviour. Many children have experienced changes to their lives caused by the pandemic, so it’s not surprising when this shows up as challenging behaviour. While some children relished a return to the more structured routine of


the school day and are happy and thriving in their learning bubbles, other pupils have struggled to get back to normality. In the October Ofsted Covid-19 briefing, schools noted a deterioration in


pupils’ concentration and many reported children seemed less willing to follow rules compared with when they first returned to school in September. My colleague Stella Mead has some words of advice about how to help


children back to making good choices, both inside and outside the classroom. Separate positive and negative behaviour One way to refresh your school’s approach to behaviour management is to separate the rewards and sanctions elements of your school’s behaviour policy. You might want to introduce a positive reinforcement chart for each class


bubble, for example, or allocate time at the end of the day when pupils can share compliments to help spread positivity and encourage good choices in lessons. Taking reward points away when a child’s behaviour deteriorates is not


very motivating for the children you are trying to encourage. Think about designing a separate polity focussed on restorative care and consequences for when pupils make poor choices. Accentuate the positives A good way for teachers to focus on positive behaviour is to spend some time with the class talking about and celebrating the positive choices children have made in the classroom and in the playground. This could be helping a friend with their work, opening the door for an


adult or sharing with others. Devote five minutes each day to asking children to write words and


phrases on the whiteboard of the choices they have made that they are most proud of. Alternatively, get children to create a poster on Friday afternoons to highlight the positivity they have witnessed around school during the week. Keep pupils motivated To encourage positive behaviour all year round, put special dates in the school calendar each term to celebrate and reward the good choices being made across your school. This could be an award for kindness offered to an individual child, or a


badge for the most helpful class. These celebrations give everyone something to work towards and keep the positive message going throughout the school year. If you have a reward system in place using charts, badges or golden time,


it’s a good idea to maintain consistency across classes and year groups. That way, children don’t need to relearn different rules as they move through the school. A behaviour tracking system linked to your MIS can make it easier for


teachers to manage behaviour without needing to log out of one system and into another, saving time. You may also want to link to a digital badge or reward system which is a quick and easy way to recognise achievement. We’ve all come through a very tough year, and the time you spend


understanding the issues your children and families face, and shaping a behaviour management strategy that can be delivered consistently in every classroom will be time well spent. Every school day counts, so encouraging children to make good choices and providing the right support at the right time will make all the difference.


u Visit https://junipereducation.org/10dayproject/ for a set of free resources from Juniper Education aimed to give primary school leaders ideas to make more Child-time


14 www.education-today.co.uk


Do you know what’s in the air you breathe?


Comment by MATTHEW ALEXANDER, Director, Intratek Ltd


2020 was a difficult year for everyone, with uncertainty and disruption causing many businesses and institutions to fall upon their hardest times. This has been evident throughout many conversations with our clients and more poignantly, meeting with people involved in the education sector. According to teachers and pupils alike it has been a constant learning curve in new ways of teaching and communicating to pupils, from online ‘Teams’ lessons and group WhatsApp discussions to emailed lesson plans. Intratek Ltd have been supporting a number of school trusts and Boards on how to make their schools safer, by challenging them to look seriously at their indoor air quality.


This increasingly important issue has become a major talking point


over the last nine months around the world due to the current Covid19 pandemic. Masks, one-way systems and constant sanitiser requests have all contributed to the public’s concern over the quality of the air that they breathe.


Schools are at the forefront of the battle against the spread of


Covid19, and as widely reported a lot of young people could be carriers without showing symptoms. So how do schools, universities and other educational institutions cope with what seems to be the impossible task of not contributing towards the spread whilst giving confidence to both pupils and staff that the air that they breathe is pollutant free?


Intratek provides some of the most efficient and advanced air


purification products in the world and we have noticed a sharp increase in the traffic coming through the company’s website from the educational sector worrying about their staff and pupils. Schools and universities are understandably worried about the effects and transmission of Covid19 and other viruses. Intratek can provide a cost- effective solution to providing safe air quality.


Air purification products are in high demand both on a consumer and


corporate level; however, it seems that many schools are not upgrading their filtration systems and still using antiquated products, if any!


Staff and student health should be the number one priority; however,


a large number of education trusts operate beyond their means putting excessive strain on already tight budgets, leading to purely financial decisions being made at the cost of people’s health. Intratek have researched and discussed both issues with trusts and have a solution, partnering with Room 12 and providing fantastic funding packages and even free installation of certain products schools.


At the end of the day we as parents need our schools open, we need


our children learning and our teachers safe. There should be no excuse for a lack of investment in improving indoor air quality. This pandemic is not going away and the likelihood is that we now live in a world where we will see the increase of pandemics globally. This will become a way of life and we as humans need to learn to adapt pretty quickly to a different way of thinking. A more thoughtful and less careless approach to indoor air quality can only help lower future cases and also enlighten our children’s views of our species fragility. With that in mind, a focus on efficient, affordable, airborne virus filtration systems, should be at the very top of every school’s agenda to ensure their doors are kept wide open!


u www.intratekltd.com/education


January 2021


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