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Video: do not argue with students

Date: November 19th, 2015
By: Polly Bath

Polly Bath: If you have a student who wants to argue, what is the most effective thing we can do? Don’t engage!

Don’t even make a sound, because if you don’t talk back, then they can’t argue with you.

My other technique I use is a script. If I tell a student to move their seat and the child says, “I don’t want to move my seat over there, you always pick on me!” I’ll stop, say nothing, and go do whatever I was doing. Then, I’ll go back and say again, “I asked you to move your seat over there.”

Whatever the student says back, I just continue to say the same thing, “Move your seat over there.” Same words, same sentence. When they ask, “How come I have to move my seat?” I don’t say, “Because you’re always the one who’s talking.” I don’t want to take the student on.

These are the two best techniques to use if they want to argue: silence or a script.