Best Practice

How would you respond? When pupils get angry

In her articles this year, Shahana Knight is spotlighting common behaviours or classroom scenarios, looking at why they might occur and how we can respond therapeutically. This time, she looks at pupils who are angry

It is so easy to see a child’s struggle as misbehaviour or a choice, when in fact every difficult behaviour is a result of an internal feeling, thought or experience that the child is finding hard to process and manage.

They are not sure how to identify why they are upset, how to regulate themselves or manage the feeling and their responses to it. Our job is to find the “why” behind the behaviour and to have enough insight and training to be able to guide them through this, helping them to figure it all out. But how do you do that when you are faced with a child who is angry and aggressive? Our goals should be to teach the children to be able to:

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