Having a Bad Day? Reflecting on the Causes of Behaviors

Savannah Moffett
Blog on July 18 2022

Addressing behavior through the No Limits Method

Many teachers have countless examples of their students having bad days. Perhaps, they just couldn’t focus on a particular task or were acting out. During those times, you may have tried everything you knew to help, but nothing was working. This can be draining, but as teachers, we must help our students define their needs and redirect these behaviorsThere is always a catalyst for every behaviorand not every behavior that is disruptive should be defined as “maladaptive” or “bad” behavior, especially for exceptional education students.

With the knowledge, experience, and tools that the No Limits Method provides, educators have been able to tune into and connect deeper with students to help address these behaviors. The No Limits Method equips educators with information and strategies that enable them to work with students in evaluating, preventing, and redirecting behaviors while keeping the classroom productive and fun.

Evaluating student behaviors

When teaching exceptional students, many behaviors can be easily labeled as “bad” behaviors; however, it’s not always so simple. These behaviors may be self-soothing techniques that are caused by a sensory need, or a by-product related to their diagnosis. To prevent this mislabelling and determine the root cause of the behaviorit is important to carefully evaluate the students and situations that cause these behaviorsIt may be helpful to take a step back, observe the situation, and analyze what happened before, during, and after the behavior. Ask the questions, “What could have triggered it? and How can we try to redirect it?”

By using the No Limits Method, one can learn to reflect upon those questions and try to understand the root cause of actions and reactions. This methodology can help one understand that most behaviors are the result of a need that is not being met. For example, let’s take a look at behaviors resulting from being overstimulated. Imagine hearing a series of loud noises, seeing crowds of people swarming around, and the lights flickering right in front of your eyes. Now, picture being unable to identify that you don’t like these sounds, crowds, and lights. Take it one step further: you can’t escape this reality, even though, logically, you know it’s most likely temporary. Pretty scary, right? This is what some students experience when their sensory needs aren’t properly addressed. Once understood, an educator will be able to address sensory needs, calm fears, and redirect behavior for their students. As our understanding grows, we can apply it to many other aspects of behavior, such as understimulation, sensory seeking, and expressing frustration.

Exploring helpful strategies and approaches

When working with exceptional students, we must also evaluate their sensory needs, as these can directly impact a student’s capacity to learn, their cognitive function, emotional well-being, physical function, and socialization. The No Limits Method’s micro-credentialing courses include the key principles of sensory integrative approaches, including the Just Right Challenge, and adaptive response and active engagement models. We also explore the “golden rule” of sensory input, as what is optimal for one student may not be for every student. All of these concepts and strategies will help educators, paraprofessionals, caregivers, and parents to promote each student’s ability to achieve personal and educational goals. We all know these kinds of behaviors exist, and with the No Limits Method, we now have the power to prevent and eliminate them with a multitude of tools.

For more tips, tricks, and tools for teaching in and out of the classroom, check out more articles on the Teq Talk blog.

We also offer virtual professional development, training, and remote learning support for educators with OTIS for educators. Explore the technology, tools, and strategies that can spark student success — no matter where teaching or learning are happening.

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