Your Class Clown: How To Deal With Them

It’s no secret that every classroom seems to have a student who can’t help but be the class clown. Whether they’re constantly interrupting the lesson, distracting others with their silly antics, or just being noisy, these kids can make it difficult for everyone else to learn. But how do you deal with them?

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the most effective methods teachers have found for dealing with those pesky class clowns.


Your Class Clown: How To Deal With Them


What Is A Class Clown?

A class clown is a student who wants to be the center of attention in the classroom. They like to be funny or witty, so their classmates will want to listen to them and give them the attention they’re seeking out.

In small doses, a class clown can have a positive effect on the classroom. After all, a little humor is a great way to keep the day refreshing. But most often, these students are detrimental to a good learning experience. And that means you need effective methods to keep them under control.


Why Do Students Behave This Way?

Essentially, class clowns almost always have a great desire to have attention. It’s believed that poor self-esteem is a driving factor behind this behavior. It’s likely they get a temporary boost to their ego anytime they can get a laugh out of their peers.

Unfortunately, they often don’t care if it’s good or bad attention. And it’s often the case that they don’t have any close friends, despite getting the occasional chuckle out of nearby students. It’d be best you find a way to manage these class clowns so your class can get the education they deserve.


How To Deal With Them As A Teacher


Don’t React

The worst thing you can do is provide an emotional reaction. Remember, to these students, any attention is better than no attention. So by providing an emotional outburst, you may only reinforce their bad behavior.

You’d be better off not reacting at the moment, and letting the student’s comment or joke simply meet with dead air. Can you imagine the feeling of your own comment being met with silence, when you expected a laugh? That wouldn’t feel good at all. Once the silence rings out and has a clear impact on the student, use that weight to then express your disagreement with their behavior (again, in a controlled, non-emotional way), and then move on with your lecture.


Provide Strategic Attention

Student helping another student

You could also try using their attention-seeking habits to your advantage. Try giving positive attention for jobs well done, such as good effort in the classroom or if they help another student do their work. If possible, try to reward them in a person-to-person scenario. This will train them to seek out less attention during a lecture, and decrease their disruptive behaviors.


Point Out The Negative Consequences

Many class clowns simply don’t differentiate between positive and negative attention. As long as they can get a rise out of their fellow students, they’ll consider it a job well done. However, you can use this to help them realize how much they’re interrupting the classroom as well. This is best saved for when the first two tactics don’t work well for you and your class.

The next time your student does something to disturb the class, simply say something like, “Class, please do a thumbs-down if you feel like you can’t focus on learning right now.” If all goes well, there’ll be multiple thumbs facing downwards, and you can use it to help the distracting student realize that his behavior is not wanted by others. Social proof like this can be powerful even for adults, so make sure to use this tactic with wisdom and care.


Keep Control Over Your Class Clown For The Best Classroom Experience

Class clowns, while they may be funny to some, can be a real distraction in the classroom. They do it for attention and are often low self-esteem individuals who need someone to notice them or feel like their behavior is ok. But by using the above methods, you’ll have a few options to get them under control and acting like a good student fast.

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