How to Be Well Behaved at School

Three Methods:Behaving in the ClassroomBehaving Outside of the ClassroomGoing the Extra Mile

Carry yourself well, stay under control, and be polite at all times and you will develop a good reputation for being well-behaved. Good behavior makes a good impression on teachers and administrators and they'll be inclined to put in a good word for you. A squeaky-clean record and upright demeanor can also improve your college admission prospects and help when you search for jobs.

Method 1
Behaving in the Classroom

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    Listen attentively to your teacher. This is the easy and will lay the foundation for the way others view your behavior. When a teacher, principal, or other school official is speaking, be sure to listen carefully or they may cross-question you. Listen even if they're not speaking to you directly (for instance, at an assembly). A teacher's day is spent struggling to win the attention of kids who would rather read books, not talk to friends (but instead listen to the topic), and ignore on their phones and such things during lessons. If you listen intently, she will notice you and begin to think of you as a good student.
    • Avoid asking your teacher to re-explain things they've just explained in great detail just for fun or to gain her attention or else you may frustrate or anger them. Instead, wait for a moment when you can approach your teacher one-on-one and say something like, "I'm sorry, I think I need a little more help understanding how to do this."
    • If you have any such condition that makes it hard for you to concentrate, remember to take resolve it when you wake up in the morning (such as take a medicine if you are not feeling well) so that you'll pay attention during the lectures and lessons.
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    Follow the teacher's directions. Teachers like to see that their students are treating them with respect. If you intently follow all of their directions, they may even give you special freedoms or privileges under the assumption that you're trustworthy. In addition to following their verbal directions, read your teacher's syllabus carefully and follow any special instructions you find. Many students forget to study their syllabuses - get one step further than them by paying extra attention.
    • If, for instance, your teacher said not to enter the classroom before they arrive, but your classmates have gone in anyway, you should wait outside. If you're the only person to follow the rules exactly, you'll stand out in your teacher's mind as a good rule-follower.
    • Some teachers like to give vague, cagey advice to see who listens and who doesn't. If she/he says something mysterious like, "be sure to study this weekend," take note - she/he might be planning a pop quiz for Monday. You'll make an excellent impression if you are the only one prepared.
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    Strive for good grades. Everyone's academic strengths and weaknesses are different - don't worry if you can't get perfect grades or marks . It's much more important to show your teacher that you're trying your level best. Ask intelligent and sensible questions during class. If there's something you're having an especially hard time understanding, meet your teacher after class.
    • Your willingness to seek help will show your teacher that you're taking their class seriously. A student who's clearly engaged in the material is more likely to be considered favorably when the teacher is assigning partial credit, tests, re-takes, etc.
    • If you're struggling hard to comprehend any subject , don't be afraid to ask your teacher for a tutor recommendation. Seeking help when you need it is a sign of maturity which most teachers will admire and prefer.
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    Participate in the class. Many classes are discussion-centered. The lecture in these classes takes the form of a dialog between the teacher and the students. Try to answer questions your teacher asks the class. Even if you don't answer correctly, you'll show your teacher that you're engaged in the material. If you don't participate, the teacher may think you aren't listening or don't care about the material.
    • Raise your hand when you have something to say in class. Never blurt out answers! Most teachers get irked when students answer without being called on.
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    Be quiet. Don't talk to your friends or otherwise disrupt the class, especially if you're in your teacher's favouritism. Repeated disturbances can infuriate your teacher or even get you ejected from class. Respect your teacher. It should be fairly obvious when s/he wants you to be quiet. If you're not sure, err on the side of quietness or try waiting for another student to talk first, then judge your teacher's reaction.
    • If the teacher leaves the room, you might get away with talking a little. However, quiet down as soon as they return. Never talk if the teacher leaves during a test - other students might tell about you if you disturb them or try to cheat.
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    Work towards a clean slate. Not every student who reads this guide will have a history of perfect conduct. If you've behaved poorly in the past, start improving your image immediately. Apologize to your teachers, students, or administrators you've disrespected. If you've been especially bad, bring your teacher a small, modest gift for an upcoming holiday. Devote more attention to your schoolwork. Pay more attention in class. Serve any outstanding detention time, then follow the above steps to keep out of trouble in the future.

Method 2
Behaving Outside of the Classroom

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    Don't waste time in the hallway. Between classes, it's only natural to say hi to any friends you might meet. This is perfectly acceptable for a well-behaved student. However, don't let yourself get distracted talking or goofing off. Keep track of your time and always allow yourself enough time to get to class before the bell. Passing periods can be deceptively short and teachers hate it when a student is late. If you're tardy repeatedly, you might even be subject to detention or other discipline.
    • If you've got a timer function on your watch or cell phone, use it. Designate a set amount of time - three minutes, for example - that you're allowed to talk with friends. When your timer goes off, wrap up what you're doing and get to class!
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    Stay in the administration's good graces. Presidents, deans, and provosts: these school figures aren't teachers, but that doesn't mean you can ignore them and other people in the administration. Anyone who works in an office in the school probably has the ear of the principal or someone else who can discipline you. Be respectful to these people - a good reputation among the members of the administration can be a godsend if you get in real trouble.
    • Here's one example: many schools have a secretary in the school's office who you need to talk to if you arrive at school late for some reason. Sometimes, this person is annoying, and, because they don't have the power to discipline you, it's tempting to give them sass. Don't do it. They probably talk to the principal every day. Even if they don't rat you out to the principal, they'll make life difficult for you the next time you show up with a poorly-forged doctor's note.
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    Avoid fights. This one's sometimes very difficult, but it's always very important. Many schools have zero-tolerance policies on fighting - throw a punch and you can easily find yourself suspended or expelled. Spare your permanent record from the threat of black ink. Don't get into fights unless it's absolutely necessary to protect yourself. Even in desperate cases where you have to fight, you run the risk of serious trouble. Teachers and administrators won't necessarily know who started the fight. If it's your word against the bully's words, then there's a good chance you'll both be punished. The best policy is to avoid fights entirely. Here are some tips:
    • Know how to deal with bullies. Bullies are weak, insecure people who hurt you to feel better about themselves. Try to thwart them without fighting.
    • Ignore your aggressors. Sometimes, people pick fights for attention or because they're bored or unfulfilled. Ignore these people to make them look like idiots. Headphones can be a great tool for this - just turn your music up.
    • Tell a teacher or administrator. If you feel like you're being picked on, tell your school's staff, especially if you're worried that your bully will eventually start a fight. If s/he does, you'll be able to say that you tried to warn them about the danger beforehand.
    • Never instigate a fight. No matter how disrespectful someone is to you, you'll bear the brunt of the blame if you throw the first punch. If you're fuming mad at another student, do whatever you need to do to control your temper - listen to some calming music, eat a big meal, or perform some vigorous exercise, for starters.
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    Don't badmouth anyone. Gossip, especially juicy gossip, can be hard to resist spreading, but you definitely should avoid doing so. Word gets around schools quickly, and if someone hears you've said something nasty behind their back, you'll quickly get an untrustworthy reputation. This goes double for teachers or administrators. Vicious rumors about staff members can put their jobs in jeopardy. If you're caught for starting a rumor about one of the school's employees, your punishment will be severe.
    • It goes without saying, but spreading gossip is also just a mean thing to do. Before you say something mean about someone, reflect on whether the statement is true or just a rumor. If it's true, think about how it would make this person feel if s/he heard it.

Method 3
Going the Extra Mile

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    Enroll in extracurricular activities. Your good behavior shouldn't necessarily begin and end in the classroom - most schools have a selection of extracurricular activities you can sign up for. By devoting yourself to your extracurricular, you'll have an opportunity to enlarge your circle of friends (in terms of both students and faculty members) and develop a reputation as a hard worker. Here are a just a few extracurricular your school might offer:
    • Sports teams
    • Musical ensembles or bands
    • Vocal groups
    • Plays or musicals
    • Special interest clubs (debate, cooking, robotics, etc.)
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    Cultivate a "good" appearance. It's sad but true - many students and teachers are shallow - they'll judge you based on your looks. If you really want to get a reputation as a goody two shoes, try to dress and groom yourself so that you look as clean-cut as possible. Avoid ripped denim, baggy pants or jerseys. Don't wear piercings on your face or body. Keep a smile - don't try to look tough or menacing. Sadly, these changes to your surface appearance will cause some people to view you differently.
    • Boys should be clean-shaven, with a short, conservative haircut. Tend towards button-up shirts and clean, good-fitting pants or slacks. Don't wear earrings.
    • Girls should avoid ostentatious makeup, revealing clothing (a bare midriff, low-cut shirts, etc.), and excessive jewelry.
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    Reach out to unpopular people. One great way to get a saintly reputation is to go out of your way to be friendly and welcoming to unpopular students. Volunteer to show new kids around the school. If you see someone sitting by themselves at lunch, pull up a chair next to them. Stand up to bullying. You can even try taking social pariahs to school dances. Above all, be a friend to the friendless. You'll definitely be noticed. Plus, it's a really nice thing to do.
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    Become a leader. By finding in a leadership role, you have more potential to do good (and a greater audience to notice your good deeds.) Run for student government, start your own after-school club, or become the captain of an intramural sports team. Whatever you do, lead by example - well-behaved leaders can quickly gain the respect and admiration of students and teachers alike.
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    Do good outside of school. Word travels fast at school - the things you do outside of school can affect the way you're seen at school. Be an active volunteer at homeless shelters or charities. Enroll in a community-outreach program. Spend a Saturday building affordable housing through a program like Habitat for Humanity. Become a mentor for an at-risk youth. Encourage your friends to do the same. All of these things will count towards your goal of cultivating a noble goody-goody persona at school.
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    Ignore haters! It's almost unavoidable - some people are going to resent you for trying to be good at school. Ignore any teasing or insults that might come your way. By doing so, you display maturity and restraint. In turn, you make them look immature. Don't let the haters get to you - the rewards of behaving well aren't worth the instant gratification of retaliation.
    • Don't stoop to your haters' level by hurling your own insults back at them. The best revenge is to live happily while continuing to do good - it'll frustrate them to no end.


  • Asking questions is okay.
  • Remember everyone makes mistakes.
  • Don't give up the good behavior.
  • Don't use bad words.
  • Do not be afraid to ask questions about your subject.


  • If you have good behavior, then mess up badly, people will be very disappointed in you, they'll think that you're not serious, and wonder if what you're going after is what you really want to do. Chances are your teacher will even advise you to do something else.
  • Good behavior means sticking to it.
  • Some teachers may just be kidding around, when she says something odd, so make sure she says, "Yeah, that's what we're doing today." and doesn't just laugh.

Article Info

Categories: School Discipline