Are you a teacher who’s been frustrated by the disruptive behavior of students in your classroom?
You’re not alone. Many teachers have to deal with this issue every day. In fact, according to research, teachers say they have dealt with student misbehavior on a daily basis. And some say it takes away from their lesson plans and reduces instructional time.
So, what are some of the most common types of disruptive behavior in the classroom? They include outbursts, like screaming or shouting; refusing to follow directions; using profanity; destroying property; and arguing.
What Are the Types of disruptive behavior in the classroom?
Well, this is a very good question because the answer to that question varies between the pre-school and high school, as well as from class to class. There are no hard and fast rules for what behavior is allowed and not allowed in just any classroom situation. This makes it difficult at times for teachers who have never taught before to know exactly what is and is not disruptive behavior. What follows is a list of thirty types or forms of disruptive behavior in the classroom that might help to give you a far better understanding as to what behavior may be construed as being just a bit on the “troublesome” side.
1) Disconnecting from assigned work:
This particular form of disruptive behavior is often exhibited by a student who simply does not want to do the work. There are a variety of reasons for this, including not feeling well or never having been taught how to do the assigned task. In any case, it is up to the teacher to be able to elicit from students why they may be disconnecting from their work and then deal with that particular student accordingly.
2) Complaining about work:
Another very common form of disruptive behavior in the classroom is complaining about what is being given to do. Let’s face it, no one wants to do work they think is too hard or too easy, but complaining about it only serves to distract those students who are trying to do the work.
3) Aggression towards others:
This form of disruptive behavior is exhibited when a student physically attacks another student in class, say for example punching them or grabbing their hat. Obviously, this kind of behavior leads to major disciplinary actions.
4) Cheating on tests and homework:
When students are asked to turn in a test or homework assignment, they are often given a chance to self-check their own work, but when they cheat on the test or task it becomes disruptive behavior.
5) Disrespecting authority:
This form of disruptive behavior typically shows itself when students refuse to listen to what the teacher has to say and instead try and cut their own path. This usually happens when students are trying to get out of something that is required, such as a task or assignment.
6) Disrupting transfer of materials:
Sometimes, students can become disruptive in the classroom by constantly disturbing other students who are working on tasks because they want their attention for their own work. In this case, it is up to the teacher to take action and quiet down those students who are disrupting others.
7) Leaving a mess for someone else:
In some cases, students will refuse to clean up after themselves because they believe that somebody else should be responsible for putting away their things at the end of class. This form of disruptive behavior can quickly become a problem for other students as well as the teacher.
8) Making derogatory comments:
In some cases, a student may become disruptive in a class by saying negative things about another person or something that they do not like, which can quickly become a problem if it continues over time.
9) Passing notes during lessons:
Sometimes students will try and communicate with each other while the teacher is trying to give a lesson. This form of disruptive behavior should be stopped by the teacher immediately.
10) Refusing to complete tasks or assignments:
When students are given an assignment or task, sometimes they will refuse to do it all together, leading to potential disciplinary actions from teachers.
11) Throwing objects around the room:
Throwing things in a classroom is always a form of disruptive behavior, as it can distract other students and force the teacher to waste time cleaning up.
12) Making distracting noises:
Students have many different ways to be disruptive, including by making lots of unnecessary noise, such as tapping their feet or playing with something. Sometimes this form of behavior can be irritating to other students who are trying to concentrate on the lesson at hand.
13) Failing to complete work:
Students may become disruptive when they refuse to do the work that has been assigned different ways of being disruptive by making loud or strange noises that will disturb those who are trying to focus on their studies. Some students will also refuse to do the work that is assigned to them, which leads to many issues with teachers.
14) Challenging authority:
Telling a teacher or any other adult in school what they must do can quickly lead to disciplinary actions against students who are exhibiting disruptive behavior.
15) Disruptive behaviors on social media:
While technology has brought many wonderful new things to the classroom and the world, it has also introduced many new forms of disruptive behavior. Some students might make rude or insulting comments on social media, which can quickly lead to disciplinary action by teachers and school officials.
16) Touching objects without permission:
In some cases, students will do things such as touching the teacher’s desk, their belongings, or other objects without express permission. This form of disruptive behavior can quickly lead to disciplinary actions against students who are exhibiting similar behaviors.
17) Making inappropriate gestures:
Sometimes students will make rude gestures in the classroom that might not be caught by teachers but interfere with the concentration of other students.
18) Leaving their seats without permission:
Sometimes students will refuse to follow the rules of the classroom, including staying in their seats when they have not been given permission by a teacher or other school official.
19) Showing disrespect for authority:
Making rude remarks about teachers and any other adults is always disruptive behavior that should be stopped as soon as possible.
20) Refusing to clean up after themselves:
Leaving the classroom in a mess at the end of class is always disruptive behavior that should be stopped by teachers.
21) Excessive talking:
Sometimes students will believe that they are allowed to talk during lessons when in reality they are not. This form of disruptive behavior can sometimes mean that other students do not get a chance to speak and express their ideas.
22) Failing to turn in work on time:
Teachers will usually assign a deadline for students who are given work, and it is always disruptive behavior when students fail to meet this deadline.
23) Beginning before an assignment is finished:
When teachers give assignments, they might explain how long they should take to finish. Sometimes students will jump the gun and begin early, which can sometimes cause them to make mistakes that lead to poor work.
24) Interrupting a lesson:
When teachers are teaching a lesson, any form of disruptive behavior from students who interrupt lessons is inappropriate.
25) Cheating on assignments:
Students may become disruptive when they cheat on assignments by copying or helping other students cheat.
26) Making noises that are distracting:
Sometimes students will make sounds that are very distracting to others, such as tapping their feet or clicking pens repeatedly. These forms of disruptive behavior can be irritating to some students who are trying to focus on the lesson at hand.
27) Not turning in work that is late:
Sometimes students will become disruptive when they do not turn in work on time, and teachers should mark such behavior as disruptive.
28) Laughing at other people’s problems:
Students may become disruptive when they laugh at the problems of other people, whether or because those others are younger than them or because those others are in a lower position in the school structure.
29) Not listening to instructions:
Teachers will often give students instructions for various activities, and it is disruptive behavior when students do not follow these instructions.
30) Not following safety procedures/rules:
It is always disruptive behavior when students are not careful about safety procedures at all times, including during recess and during physical education lessons.
What to Do When You Are Facing Disruptive Behavior?
For many teachers, these behaviors can be frustrating, especially when they’re unexpected.
If you’re facing disruptive behavior in your classroom, there are a number of steps you can take. Some of them are stated below:
1. Make clear rules, procedures, and routines to manage activities in the classroom.
2. Build positive relationships with your students.
3. Be flexible in your teaching methods and styles.
4. Make use of positive reinforcement in your class.
5. Make behavioral contracts with students.
6. Have a clear plan for managing your classroom.
7. Use timeouts effectively, when necessary.
8. Manage your emotions effectively. Always be calm and don’t lose it when dealing with misbehavior.
9. Create strong positive relationships with parents.
10. Collaborate with other teachers, counselors, administrators to deal with disruptive behavior.
The various forms of disruptive behavior in the classroom can lead to disciplinary actions against students who are exhibiting similar behaviors. Those who are not careful about safety procedures, including during physical education lessons, are also exhibiting disruptive behavior. Many forms of disruptive behavior lead to disciplinary actions against students, so it is important for teachers and other school officials to pay attention and maintain order in the classroom at all times.