Can We Really Control a Child’s Behavior?

In many cases people like to think that they have control over others. This happens a lot at prisons, armed service branches, and even at school.

Teachers and school staff would like to think that they completely control the actions and behaviors of the children. However, the truth is that we do not.

There are many ways that others can inflict punishment for those who do not carry out a desired behavior. However, for those few who can tolerate pain, punishment, and humiliation, there is really little that can be done. One is only in control over him or herself.

After some discussion at school and hearing a fellow teacher at lost on what to do with a misbehaving student, I realized that technically we cannot make a child behave.

I feel that I have decent control over my class. There are very few interruptions and the children basically do as they are told and follow all classroom procedures. In general with most children teachers do have control.

However, every now and then a teacher will come across a child that likes to challenge the system. The child is not easily intimated and has a mind set against pain. The child is strong willed and becomes a great challenge and somewhat burden for the teacher.

So what can we really do at school with these children? Lost of free time and time out from the group are an option. However, these children usually end up never getting to play and staying out of the group so much that they cannot possibly get with the flow of the class or even learn the needed material. In some states, mine included, a paddling is another option. However, the strong will of this child is far tougher than any paddling. We can call the parents but they usually have the same troubles at home and are also looking for help and advice on how to handle the child.

Therefore the teacher ends up stressed and in a constant upheaval due to this one child. And all the while the child sees victory.

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