The PBIS World Book

Break, Moving Position In Class

Why should I do it:

  • To provide students with a cool down time
  • To allow students time away from a stressful or potentially stressful situation
  • It can help avoid a power struggle between you and the student
  • Can help students to “reset” and return to a task fresh
  • Takes student’s mind off what may be hindering them
  • Helps break up monotonous tasks, assignments, activities, etc
  • Can improve motivation and effort

When should I do it:

  • When a student gets off task and is beginning to be disruptive but not problematic
  • When a student is distracted
  • When a student is slowing down on the task at hand and losing interest/motivation
  • When student is beginning to be argumentative or confrontational
  • When a student is refusing to follow a directive
  • When you are aware of an ADD/ADHD diagnosis
  • When student seems fidgety, moves a lot, cannot sit still
  • When student is becoming frustrated or agitated with the task at hand
  • When two or more students are engaged in conflict, argument, or are just getting annoyed with one another
  • When a student seems to be getting bored, sleepy, or their eyes are glazing over
  • When a student’s emotions and/or behaviors need to be deescalated

How do I do it:

  • Identify the student in need of the break
  • Ask the student to move to a specific seat other then their own (tell them specifically which seat you want them to move to)
  • If a student is distracted by something by the door or window, move them to a seat away from these distractions
  • If there are no seats to move the student to, have them move their desk or a chair to a new spot in the room
  • If there are multiple students needing moving breaks, ask those students to all get up and swap seats for a subject or period of time
  • Apply this concept to an entire class or school by creating a cue or key word, that when said or done, indicates that all students are to swap seats with someone else

Alternative Methods:

  • Breaks may be less formal and simply involve getting a snack
  • Breaks may be as simple as a student moving to another spot in the classroom
  • Breaks may include sending a student on an errand, taking a note or paper to another teacher or the office, or some other task that gets the student up and out for a short break