Home / MTSS / MTSS-T1 / Talking One-on-One with a Student



Why should I do it?

  • Students are more likely to listen to your input when it’s done away from others
  • It gives cool down time for both you and the student before discussing an issue
  • It provides the student a chance to state his thoughts and feelings

When should I do it?

  • When a behavior has caused disruption to the class or the student’s day

How do I do it?

  • This technique takes a lot of patience, support, self-control and self-talk
  • Keep responses brief; avoid lecturing
  • Try re-direction if student is able to be de-escalated
  • Remove student from situation and make an appointment time to talk about the issue
  • Use reflective listening “I am hearing that you feel this assignment is unnecessary” “I hear you telling me that he took your toy away”
  • Ask open ended questions
  • Use body language that represents openness: If you are sitting, keep legs uncrossed and lean toward the person; If you are standing, keep arms uncrossed and legs open—people often mirror their emotional response with others’ body language
  • Use humor
  • Validate student’s feelings:

Aggression: “I know that you got mad after that”

Sadness: “ I can see you are sad about this”

Anxiety: “When you tap your feet, I’m guessing you are worried about the test”

Confrontation: “I need to talk to you about your calling your friend a name”

  • Teach alternatives

“Tell me some things you could have done differently”   “The next time, you get mad, try walking away and taking a break”

“When you get worried about your tests, try to think of all the tests you’ve taken and done great on”