The effects of an in-service course to develop early childhood teachers' skill in positive behaviour strategies

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Conference Contributions - Other
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Thesis discipline
Degree name
University of Canterbury. School of Health Sciences
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Tyler-Merrick, G.
Phillips, Joanna

Early childhood teachers report that children’s disruptive behaviour is one of the major challenges they face as teachers. The aim of this study was to identify the current behaviour management strategies used by seven teachers at a preschool and to examine the effects of training these teachers in the effective use of positive teaching strategies to increase appropriate behaviour and decrease disruptive behaviour in three and a half to five year old children. A variety of methodologies were employed including direct observation, the use of a rating scale and reflective teacher questionnaires. The results indicate that the teachers’ initial understanding of strategies such as contingent praise and attention were limited and that they would benefit from an in-service training programme focused on teaching positive behavioural strategies. After training, all teachers increased their use of descriptive praise and they increased their contingent responses following child requests. This increase in teacher behaviour was accompanied by an increase in child appropriate behaviour and a decrease in child disruptive behaviour. These results raise a number of important implications for teachers. These implications will be discussed and audience involvement at this time is actively encouraged.

Phillips, J., Tyler-Merrick, G. (2015) The effects of an in-service course to develop early childhood teachers' skill in positive behaviour strategies. Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand: New Zealand Association of Research in Education Early Childhood Education SIG Hui, 15 May 2015.
Ngā upoko tukutuku/Māori subject headings
ANZSRC fields of research
Fields of Research::39 - Education::3903 - Education systems::390302 - Early childhood education
Field of Research::13 - Education::1303 - Specialist Studies in Education::130313 - Teacher Education and Professional Development of Educators