Catch Them Being Good

Additional Suggestions and Considerations

  1. Initially, select a few class periods when you will use this strategy. This will make it easier for you to get used to praising appropriate behavior more frequently. As you become more accomplished and as the strategy becomes successful, you can expand it to other class periods.

  2. In large classes, when the beep goes off on the tape recorder, scan the class and praise a sample of the children who are not being disruptive. It will be impossible to praise all of the children in the class each time. You can catch other deserving children at subsequent beeps.

  3. Initially, begin with a higher frequency of beeps per class period. Audiotapes that have a certain number of beeps for class periods of 20 minutes, 30 minutes, and 45 minutes are commercially available. If you do not purchase the commercially available audio tapes, then design your own. Be sure to have several different variations of beeps for a 20-minute class. If you use only one tape, the children may eventually memorize the timing of the beeps on that tape. For example, on a tape for a 20-minute class period with 15 beeps, you may design three different versions so that the beeps do not always appear at the same point on each tape.

  4. If you are going to use points in addition to praise, it is wise to select a program manager from the class who will keep track of the points on a chart or billboard for each child as you call out the names of those children who are not being disruptive when the beep goes off.

  5. Consider gradually thinning the ratio of beeps each period so that less praise and fewer points have to be awarded.

  6. If this technique is successful in dealing with disruptive behavior, continue its use. If not, try another technique.
Catch Them Being Good behavior technique

Council for Exceptional Children

Provided in partnership with The Council for Exceptional Children.


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