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By | September 2012
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Preventing Aggression in the Classroom
Paul Zionts
Kent State University
Sara Sibilsky Byrd
University of Kansas
Preventing Aggression 
This intervention sheet addresses both verbal and physical aggression because physical aggression is commonly preceded by verbal aggression. Verbal aggression includes damaging and sometimes threatening comments toward others that often escalate to physical aggression. Physical aggression is an invasion of personal space that is a threat to others or property. Examples of this behavior include: crowding, pushing, hitting, kicking, biting, or destroying property. Students may demonstrate one or both types of aggression. However, in general, preventing verbal aggression is essential for preventing physical aggression. Context: 

It is critical to consider the context (conditions) of aggression.  Behaviors may have a relatively low intensity or be indicative of considerable danger to others. They may begin in a seemingly minor fashion (name-calling, crowding) and escalate if intervention is not applied.  Assumptions: 

A well-defined and implemented classroom management plan that emphasizes appropriate and effective academic instruction must be in place (C.F.). Lack of such a plan, may, in fact, be a contributing factor to the presence of any or all inappropriate classroom behaviors.  The fidelity of any intervention is seriously compromised when the environment is not considered. Many management plans fail to include the levels of interventions suggested in this intervention sheet. In this connection, these activities are intended be preventative in nature and to guide the student into a path of non-aggressive behavior. While many aggressive behaviors have common triggers/origins, behavior is also highly specific to the individual student. Therefore, student characteristics, strengths, and deficits must be evaluated and techniques applied on an individualized basis. Finally, while the...

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