In our previous segment we became familiar with the various types of “whiny backtalk.” Familiarity reduces the element of surprise in backtalk and helps us remain calm.
But staying calm in the face of whiny backtalk is a piece of cake compared to staying calm in the face of nasty backtalk. If we can think of discipline management as a poker game in which the student raises the dealer...
In our previous segment we learned the Cardinal Error of dealing with backtalk. The Cardinal Error of dealing with backtalk is backtalk – your backtalk. Becoming involved with backtalk only makes the problem worse – which produces our first rule of backtalk:
It takes one fool to backtalk.
It takes two fools to make a conversation out of it.
Meaning business is the low-key, almost invisible way in which effective parents and effective teachers establish and enforce rules. In our previous segment we began our discussion of “meaning business” by examining consistency. In this context, we learned the “rule of rules”:
How do you say “no” and make it stick? We would do well to take a lesson from my mom.
My mom meant business. She had been an elementary teacher for many years, and a very good one, no doubt. But I could be as willful as any other little kid and could wheedle with the best of them. My mom referred to any such arguing or wheedling as “yammering.”
It's spring, and that means schools and school districts are planning their professional development trainings for next year. It is easy to schedule a workshop and hire a presenter. It is far more difficult to have that workshop serve as a vital part of a long-term process of professional development.
Long-term success depends on decisions made by administrators before t...