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Canter’s Behavior Management Cycle: A Case Study
In an article he recently wrote to “clarify [his] views for Kappan readers, Lee Canter asserted that classroom behavior management was significantly more than just “names on the board and marbles in a jar” (Canter). The idea was appalling to him that educators could have been so misinterpreting his management strategy that this was all they were taking away from it, and yet increasingly, this was the feeling he was acquiring after untold conversations with numerous educators—thus the article. “The key to Assertive Discipline,” he stated, “is catching students being good: recognizing and supporting them when they behave appropriately and letting them know you like it, day in and day out” (Canter). Canter’s Assertive Discipline and Behavior Management Cycle First and foremost, Canter stresses that teachers must have an effective discipline plan in place from day one, instead of deciding what to do when disciplinary action suddenly becomes necessary. His suggestion for an assertive discipline plan to be effective is to include five increasingly meaningful disciplinary measures, such as beginning with a verbal warning and progressing to a phone call home, for misbehavior, but those can be left up to the individual teacher. Canter then formulated several steps in a Behavior Management Cycle that can be quite effective when interpreted and used appropriately within the classroom. He recommends a three-step cycle of behavior management in order to establish a system of positive discipline within the classroom. The first step in this cycle is establishing specific directions or behaviors for a particular activity, and then teaching that particular behavior. This is a critical step, because all too often teachers assume that students already know how to remain quietly sitting in their seat, or how...