The aim of this essay is to create a body of knowledge for follow-on research in the field of behaviour management in primary classrooms. For this purpose, information was gathered through observations, as well as through the study and analysis of materials presented in books, research journals and professional publications, so as to determine how teachers and schools establish and maintain a high standard of behaviour in order to promote effective learning.
On initial consideration, the question posed here seemed to bracket nicely few main points of the subject, but that impression appeared to be inequitable, especially when it came to making judgments concerning different theories and approaches to the matter.
According to specialists in the field of education, school and classroom management aims at encouraging and establishing pupils’ self-control through a process of promoting their positive achievement and behaviour. Thus, academic achievement, teacher efficiency, and children’s behaviour are directly linked to the concept of school and classroom management.
As in many areas of educational research the field of behaviour management is full of controversy, which is directly connected with the debate about effectiveness of different strategies. These debates are not limited to simple account of existing tactics, but also include psychological analysis of children’s behaviour in the classroom extending to their general development and to the very description of educational aims in this area.
One of the key theories of behaviour management, known as “behaviourism”, is associated mainly with B.F. Skinner, who introduced the idea of behaviour modification, i.e. moulding all children to conform by use of a system of standard punishments and rewards. Reinforcement is one of the key elements in Skinner's theory. According to Skinner (1976), a “reinforcer” is anything that strengthens the desired response. It could be verbal praise, a...