How To Motivate a Student with a Bad Attitude?




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Attitude is a tricky thing to change, but it doesn’t have to be! In this blog post, we’ll share some of the best ways that you can motivate students with bad attitudes. We know those attitude problems are difficult for teachers and students alike, so we hope these tips will help both parties work together more smoothly in the classroom. 

Attitude is a tricky subject because, for one person, an attitude problem could stem from something as simple as being tired or feeling off-kilter on any given day. For another person, it might indicate anger management issues or other mental health concerns. We all go through our ups and downs when it comes to life’s little challenges — like schoolwork, relationships, family life — and learning how to manage those challenges is a big part of growing up and maturing. Sometimes we can be our own worst enemy, but there’s absolutely no reason why we can’t be our best motivator as well!

What Constitute Bad Attitude?

Attitude is the way we think and feel about people, things, or ideas. When we have a good attitude, we think positively; when we have a bad attitude, we think negatively. We may also express our feelings in non-verbal ways such as smiling (positive) or frowning (negative).

Our attitudes make us behave in certain ways. Attitude influences the way we interact with our world and how we deal with different situations. For example, if you have a positive attitude toward your school, you might feel happy when you get to class in the morning and rush to do your homework. On the other hand, if you have a negative attitude toward school, you might feel sad or angry when you get to class in the morning.

Teachers need to know that their students’ attitudes affect their ability to pay attention, learn new material, and behave appropriately during class. If students have a positive attitude toward learning, they are more likely to behave well and do their best work. On the other hand, if students have a negative attitude toward learning, they are more likely to misbehave and put forth less effort.

As teachers, we need to know what constitutes bad attitudes of students. A bad attitude is an expression of feelings about something. It can be broken down into nine components:

Anger and Aggression

When a student shows a great amount of anger and wants to hit or hurt someone. They become violent. Disagreeing with adults, being mean to other students, using foul language are all manifestations of a bad attitude.


When a student is anxious about the situation they are in, where they isolate themselves from everyone, which can range from their peers to adults. Sometimes they have a panic attack and lose control of themselves.


This is active behavior against the rules, laws, and authority of other people. It can be as minimal as talking back or as serious as stealing or violence.


When students feel sad and lonely, so they isolate themselves from others. They just want to be left alone and feel that they are not wanted anywhere.

Fearful of Mistakes

When they fear or avoid making mistakes even in training sessions or workshops because they feel that they will be ridiculed by teachers.


It is a state of sadness and hopelessness, which keeps on increasing over time. They cry frequently; everything seems to be dull for them.


When students try to do everything together, which makes them feel exhausted. They sometimes feel that the pressure of studies is too much for them, so they start lagging in their classes or completely drop out of school.

No Control

When students think that whatever happens, it’s not their fault. They don’t accept any responsibility for what they did. They just keep on blaming others for their problems.

What Are the Causes of Bad Behavior?

Teachers often run into difficult students whose behavior is disruptive to the entire classroom. These students can be bullies, tough kids, and non-conformists who set a bad example for other students. It’s important to know what causes these problems, so you can help solve them and create a good learning environment for everyone involved.

1) Lack of sleep.

2) Poor diets.

3) Drugs and alcohol use.

4) Illnesses.

5) Lack of parental guidance.

6) Inability to get along with others, such as siblings or classmates.

7) Bullying or being bullied at home or school.

How Do You Motivate A student with Bad Attitude?

Everyone has that one student in their class who is particularly difficult to motivate. Maybe they are just acting out because it’s the only control they have over the classroom environment, or perhaps they are simply unmotivated no matter what you do. No matter what the specific reason behind the bad attitude may be, there are several ways teachers can take to motivate a student with a bad attitude.

Be Consistent

Create a routine in your class similar to the one you have at home. If there is a certain time of day when you expect an assignment to be done or a certain amount of work expected each night, make sure you keep it consistent. He needs to know what he can expect from you.

Give Clear Instructions

When you are giving instructions to your students, ensure that you give them enough information for them to understand what is expected of them, but do not provide so much detail that they become bored or overwhelmed.

Use Positive Reinforcement

Offering positive reinforcement when a student performs well can help motivate him to maintain his current level of performance. Make sure, however, that you are reinforcing the right behaviors. If he performs poorly, try to avoid giving out too many positive reinforcements because it will only encourage him to continue to act out.

Give Clear Expectations

If you give your students a list of things, they need to do throughout the day or a list of assignments to complete at home, makes it clear when you plan to check in with them. Let them know when they will be expected to hand in their homework or turn in an assignment, and be consistent in your follow-through.

Involve The Parents

Getting the parents involved in the learning process can often motivate a student who is struggling with motivation at school. When parents are involved in the learning process, their child is much more likely to feel motivated at school because they see it as something important. It also gives you (the teacher) an opportunity to hear some of the specific issues that may be causing their behavior at school and gives you time to create a plan specifically to address those issues.

Treat the Class as A Whole

Motivating a student with a bad attitude can be difficult, but motivating your entire class can often have a positive impact on the behavior of all of your students. If you find that certain types of activities work well for different groups during a specific unit, keep those activities in rotation to keep motivation high.


Motivating a student with a bad attitude can be difficult, but motivating your entire class can often have a positive impact on the behavior of all of your students. If you find that certain types of activities work well for different groups during a specific unit, keep those activities in rotation to keep motivation high. When you consistently give clear instructions, use positive reinforcement for appropriate behaviors and involve the parents in the learning process; you will find that motivating a student with a bad attitude becomes much easier. Once you discover what motivates him specifically, keep those things in rotation and remember to be consistent. It takes some time to figure out how best to motivate your students, but if you are patient and experiment with different methods, the results will be worth it.

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