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Reasons for Behaviour

If a student is throwing pencils because they wish to be sent out of the classroom, telling the student to stop is unhelpful. Successful behaviour support requires teachers to consider the reasons behind student behaviour. The chart below describes possible reasons for student behaviour. For students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) it is important to remember that students may have difficulty with expressing themselves and behaviour may be used as a method of communication. For example, a student may be overtired after a late night and in need of a rest break. The student may seek a “time out” consequence in order to have a break from their work task or a hectic classroom. This is an example of behaviour which is motivated by a physical need, or which arises from sensory processing issues and difficulty with communication.

The reasons for behaviour may be straightforward or they may be a combination of factors from the list below. Always consider physical, medical and sensory reasons for behaviour before exploring other possible causes. 



Click here for a printable copy of this chart.