Want Better Behavior? Don’t Ask
One teacher issues commands, not requests, to get all students’ attention — and compliance.
“I try to issue instructions in the form of a command, not a question. Some students interpret ‘Would you open your math books to page 45?’ as a choice. But when I skip ‘would you,’ all books are opened. The same is true with my own children. ‘Why don’t you wash up for dinner now?’ never results in clean hands.”
–Karen Sunderhaft, fourth-grade teacher, Shaker Heights, Ohio
Updated on March 13, 2017