Student Behavior

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    • 00:11

      GAVIN WEEDY: My name's Gavin Weedy.I'm head of PSD, which is Personal and SocialDevelopment, at Goldwyn Foundation School.We are a school for people with behavioral difficulties.You guys come in, then.

    • 00:25

      SPEAKER 1: Let's get some fresh air, Charlie.

    • 00:26

      GAVIN WEEDY: Amanda.We work primarily with pupils who'vebeen excluded from other special schools.Oh, my goodness, Richie.Blue gold blue?Wow.Awesome.Next lesson is with a Year Seven groupwho we've had for about two weeks now.

    • 00:47

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: And I'm really interested in what their perception isof how they've ended up in a school like this, what theyfeel are the difficulties they've faced in the past,and how we can go about working with them to help them overcomethose difficulties so they can make progress.Have you noticed there isn't any desks?We don't do desks.I do bean bags and I do resting and chatting and talking, OK?

    • 01:13

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: Grab a beanbag.Have a sit down.And all I'm going to do today is justI want to have a chat with you, generally,about you guys, me, learning, schools, et cetera.

    • 01:24


    • 01:28

      GAVIN WEEDY: If nobody's shown youhow to use these most comfortably, it's like that.Long ways.Fold the top down.

    • 01:37

      STUDENT: Like a banana.

    • 01:37

      GAVIN WEEDY: Wooo, like that.Long ways.Fold the top.Fold the end in.And then sit on it like that.Yeah, that's it.I want you to think about when you were in primary school,

    • 01:58

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: and try and tell me something youliked about being in primary school.We are very much involved with the pupilsin looking at all aspects of their learning.We're very aware that sometimes even discussion about behaviorcan generate the very behaviors that they exhibited in orderto end up here.But we can usually cut through that

    • 02:19

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: and point it out, and have a discussion based around it,because it's important for the pupilsto realize that their behavior is impacting on their lives.A barrier is something that prevents usfrom doing something, yeah?All of you have ended up in this schoolfor one reason or another, OK?

    • 02:39

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: And what we want to do is to maximize--that means make the best opportunity-- for you guysto be able to do as well as you possibly can.From my perspective, the more knowledge that Ihave about the pupils, the better.And if they have a better picture of themselvesas learners, then they can realize the difficultiesthat need to be overcome.

    • 03:00

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: And through discussion, we can look to work cooperativelywith them in order to try and help them.And so they see that we're working,not against them-- it's not them and us-- but it's all of ustogether.I want to look at reasons why we've ended up here,and to see what you are aware of, OK?

    • 03:23

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: You don't need to share with individuals anythingthat you've been diagnosed with.But have people talked to you about anythingyou may have been diagnosed with?And if you have, has anybody spoke to you about itand how that condition might affect your learning?

    • 03:48

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: You guys should know why you ended up here,and what you and we can do to help you to make that better.You're incredibly fidgety.I'm going to have to put you in a seat in a minute,because it's extremely noisy, OK?

    • 04:08

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: So if you try and sit still, or, if you need to, go on a seat.Do you have anything that would be useful to you?

    • 04:18

      STUDENT: We're doing all right, so there'sno point knowing what to improve,because we're already doing all right now.

    • 04:26

      GAVIN WEEDY: If you're dealing with noisy behavior,you have to look at how about behavior is impactingon others, and what you define as noise.For example, I'm quite happy for pupilswho understand the nature of the task that they're doing,to perhaps sit at a computer-- if they'reworking on a computer-- with a pair of headphones on.They might be on YouTube.

    • 04:46

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: They might be on Spotify.And they could be listening to a piece of music whilstdoing their work.So we try and keep the noise levels downso it doesn't interfere with others.There are traditional methods of-- OK, let's be quiet.

    • 05:07

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: Or I would say to the kids, I'm sorry.I can't hear what you're saying.If things are noisy, particularly if somebody'sloud, I tend to go quieter and quieter.And then the kids are going, what you saying?What you saying?And eventually, the sound level will drop so they can hear me.Because I know from experience, if I shout,they're going to shout back.

    • 05:27

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: I don't listen to people who shout, so why should they?So it's more done on stealth, really,than shut up, for example.Have you ever found yourself in a position where you feel[GRUNT]?Really wound up, or agitated about something--whether it be work or somebody like Jordan shufflingaround all the time?

    • 05:48

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: And if you have, has anybody talked to youspecifically about how to deal with it?It's about making the choice.We have to give you the tools to make the choiceto have your behavior not affect everybody else,or, importantly, affect your learning.Because your behavior, through whatever reason--whether it be medical or what have you-- has got you here.

    • 06:12

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: And we need to accelerate you forward, yes?So you leave with as good a chance as anybody else.So we're going to look very closely over the next threemonths.We're going to look at what affects us as learners.See-- now that, for example, is deliberatelydesigned to irritate him, isn't it?So what's the outcome of you doing that?

    • 06:34

      STUDENT: Dunno.

    • 06:34

      GAVIN WEEDY: I'm going to go at you here.What's the outcome of you doing that?Just think-- in this context, now, you doing that,what has it done to this lesson?

    • 06:43

      STUDENT: Irritating.

    • 06:43

      GAVIN WEEDY: Hang on.I'm asking him, because he has done the behavior.So what outcome is there from you doing that?

    • 06:50

      STUDENT: Irritation.

    • 06:50

      GAVIN WEEDY: Of who?

    • 06:52

      STUDENT: Of Jordan.

    • 06:52

      GAVIN WEEDY: And?

    • 06:53

      STUDENT: Everyone else.

    • 06:54

      GAVIN WEEDY: Yeah.Is there any point in it?

    • 06:58

      STUDENT: No.

    • 06:58

      GAVIN WEEDY: OK.So what does it get you?It gets you negative feeling from other people, yeah?Because you just felt like doing it at the time.This is the kind of barrier to learning that we have,because we don't think through whatthe consequences of our actions may be.It was a useful experience, picking out

    • 07:20

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: the interaction of one pupil with the other thatinterfered with the rest of the class.But doing it in a non-confrontational wayhelps to reinforce the idea that the things that we dohas an influence on other people.What did you just say there, Jordan?

    • 07:34

      STUDENT: Think about what you're going to do before you do it.

    • 07:37

      GAVIN WEEDY: OK.So it's about making a choice, yeah?

    • 07:40

      STUDENT: Because it might be pointless.

    • 07:42

      GAVIN WEEDY: So a strategy is some wayof dealing with a potential situation, isn't it?It's like if you play chess, you can do this,or you could do that, or you could do the other, yeah?It's about making the choice.Pupils and staff safety is always at a premium.And so if a child is displaying any violent tendencies,

    • 08:06

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: they will be asked to leave in the first instance.And if they don't, then we've gotstaff that can come along, perhaps,and they'll have a word with them.Perhaps somebody that has a better relationship.If the kid's fallen out with me, I'll take myself elsewhere,and somebody else will deal with them,

    • 08:28

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: because I'm just adding fuel to the fire.If a child becomes extremely violent or disruptive,then we might say, OK, well, you stay here,and I'll take the rest of the class somewhere else.So we don't get into a physical situation if at all possible.If there is a physical confrontation,then you would step in and separate it.

    • 08:49

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: There's always a teacher and a TA in the classroom, a teachingassistant.Or two, maybe.But we like to work on the idea of preventativerather than fixing something.So there's lots of behaviors thatcould be dealt with with a nod and a wink,

    • 09:10

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: or a hand on a shoulder, or kneeling downat somebody's level, reducing the anxiety of a pupiltowards another pupil or towards a member of staff.So it's a whole range of tactics youhave a tool bag of with experience.Any of you got any idea as to what might be holding you back

    • 09:31

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: from achieving what you could do?

    • 09:33

      STUDENT: Somebody's making annoying noisesand not getting on [INAUDIBLE].

    • 09:36

      GAVIN WEEDY: Other people?

    • 09:37

      STUDENT: Yeah.

    • 09:38

      STUDENT: Same.

    • 09:39

      GAVIN WEEDY: You two are the same?We want to find ways in which we can help you.So I'm throwing it out there.You tell me what you think would help you guys to do better.What could the school provide?What would be an ideal situation for you lotto be able to take yourself forward

    • 10:01

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: to get to the best of your abilities?

    • 10:05

      STUDENT: If we're distracted or something like that,we could go to a separate room.

    • 10:11


    • 10:13

      STUDENT: So then, say if you're doing maths exams--

    • 10:17

      GAVIN WEEDY: I'm listening.I'm just trying to--

    • 10:19

      STUDENT: --something like that, and you'llget instructed you could just go off to a roomwhere you could concentrate and carry on.

    • 10:27

      GAVIN WEEDY: And take your work with you?

    • 10:29

      STUDENT: Yeah.

    • 10:29

      GAVIN WEEDY: Don't you think you can do that?Doesn't that happen at the moment, then?I wouldn't advocate this style of lessonfor a 30-minute period, because itcould become extremely boring.These kids often have a very low boredom threshold.But because they're quite new, and I'm new to them,

    • 10:50

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: at the moment we're in a honeymoon periodwhereby they are quite eager to please.What I want in my lessons is if you're getting frustrationfrom something, don't get frustrated, tell me.Tell me what it is.Don't wait until it goes wrong.Same in your other classes.Don't let the teachers have to waitto intervene when it's gone wrong.

    • 11:11

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: You can say, hey, I don't understand this.I'm not learning this.I don't get it.Don't sit there like this and pretend.And then when the work comes along,you can't do it, because you didn'tunderstand what was being said.You have to take control of your learning.And we will help you.And that was an unusual lesson, in that it was very muchteacher-directed for the whole activity.

    • 11:34

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: But it's the first time they've had to think, really,about their own situation and how it relates to school.The young lad next to me, Jordan,was obviously struggling.But, actually, he did very well, because he's an ADHD pupil.And part of it was for me to see how long he

    • 11:54

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: was able to keep concentrated.I think another five minutes, and thatwould have been done for him.Next lesson, because we're not going to have enough time now,I'm going to get you to do a big questionnaire.OK?50 questions.It's going to ask you-- we're going to do it on a computer.

    • 12:15

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: so there's no written work, you'll be glad to hear.50 questions.And it's going to ask you things like, I like my school-- a lot?A little?Not a lot.Not at all.Those are your four options.Loads of questions.And what that does is it creates what

    • 12:35

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: we call a psychometric profile of you.Now, in the past, people will have done these with you.And they'll have hidden them away,and stuck them in folders, and made decisions about you.I'm not doing that.You're going to do it.I'm going to print them out.And I'm going to show you what kind of personyou are from your responses.And you can't think, ooh, I'll put that in,

    • 12:56

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: because that'll make me look good,because it doesn't work like that.The honesty of the kids is good, particularlythe lad on my right, who was able to sayabout him not enjoying lessons.We'll explore what lessons he does like.And we'll find something.And the point of our school is we tryand we'll hook onto the things that he does enjoy.

    • 13:19

      GAVIN WEEDY [continued]: And we will make it work for him.So it's early days.But I felt good about that.And I think the kids will be genuinely interested to findout what type of learner they are when we'vedone some fact-testing-- which they know they won't knowthey're being tested, but I will.And I look forward to the outcome of that.

Student Behavior

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Head of Personal and Social Development at Goldwyn Foundation School, Gavin Weedy discusses classroom behavior including noise and violence, the importance of self-reflection and the use of psychometric profiling.

SAGE Video In Practice
Student Behavior

Head of Personal and Social Development at Goldwyn Foundation School, Gavin Weedy discusses classroom behavior including noise and violence, the importance of self-reflection and the use of psychometric profiling.

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