Wednesday, August 1, 2012

the gist of bist

Today I started school.
what? your jaw dropped? did you check your calendar?  yes, it's August 1.  and yes I started school.  well the new-teacher orientation part of school.

today we got laptops in the morning + 3 hours of laptop training.
i thought it would be lame... like, how to use microsoft word and the internet.
but it was actually really helpful.  they have all kinds of cool things in the district for technology.  (because they have a whole staff of people to write/ develop software and programs just for this district!) and it seems to mostly work.  this is a first in my limited school experience thus far.  we automatically get wordpress logins so i'm going to work on a classroom blog.  who knows? maybe i'll be come a wordpresser instead of a blogger :)

in the afternoon we received our BIST training.
BIST stands for Behavior Intervention Support Training.  hahaha my husband rolled his eyes when I told him that too.
I subbed in this district last year and was told the gist of BIST (rhyme!) and I was skeptical.  But after today, i realized most of what i was seeing was poor implementation.  user error, if you will.
it's actually a pretty helpful technique for dealing with kids prone to "chaos."
i'll spare you the details for now, but the highlights rolling around in my head are...
  • BIST is secondary to good classroom management.  5-10% of kids do not respond to basic classroom management and BIST is helpful for them.
  • The goal is to help kids acquire skills they're missing.  i.e. "I can do something even if I don't want to." or "I can be angry and upset and still not get in trouble." 
  • Changing lives comes from implementing grace and accountability.  No matter the situation, all kids should be held accountable for their actions.  Do not lower the standards.
  • Watch for behaviors that, when ignored, might get out of control... intervene early.  
  • When intervening, act calmly, quickly, firmly, kindly.
  • Do not engage outrageous behavior.  
At one point the trainer said, "Compliance with defiance is never okay.  The students must do what they're asked when they're asked to with a good attitude so that we can keep them safe."  I'm no parenting expert but it sounded like parenting 101 goals to me...  I'll file that one away.

She also said a teacher might be the only consistent adult in their life - the only person who means what they say and says what they mean. That's a big responsibility.  It might not be ideal but that's the way it is.   

Lots to think about.

No comments:

Post a Comment