Misbehaving in lessons

I’ve been pretty lucky over the past few years. I’ve never had a discipline problem with any of my students. Diminishing attention spans, yes, minor defiance, yes, but never a chronic discipline problem.

A situation last week made me question how I can better prepare mentally when a student is rude or disrespectful.

The student, Sean, was clearly in an upset mood from the start of the lesson. When I asked him how his day at school was, he didn’t answer. So I moved on and once we started to go over his music he wouldn’t try anything or do anything. He more or less sat there for 5 minutes until I left and brought his mom in. This was a rare occurrence for him, since he’s normally fine, but I used it as a chance to reflect and improve.

When you explain to a student that you’re clearly aiming to help them and yet they do whatever they can to defy you, how do you get them to listen? A simple chat with the parent solved the problem, but is there a better way?


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