Individual Behavior Plans for Fidgety Friends

 Hello, teacher friends! I wanted to pop in and show you a quick and easy idea for an individual behavior plan you can use in your classroom.  
Do you use individual behavior plans in your room? I use them when our classroom plan simply doesn’t work for one of my firstie friends. Sometimes, I’m trying to calm an extreme behavior distraction to the class with an individual plan.  Other times, it’s something minor that I know the little one can overcome with an extra plan of encouragement in place!
For today’s purposes, I am sharing a plan I am using for a little one who is having a hard time staying on task during the day.  I use Class Dojo in my room, but this little friend needs something more concrete and something tangible – a plan he can see, touch, and manipulate instantly!
 I don’t like anything that causes me a lot of “extra” time when it comes to classroom management. My classroom management motto is fast, effective, and fun!  This particular little one is SUPER fidgety.  They can’t attend to something you are saying without moving their hands, feet, arms, and body.  Do you have those kids???  I know you do! I needed a behavior plan that wasn’t abstract and was easy for ME to manage.
Here’s what I did to try to get this little one to consciously think about and reflect on how he can make smarter choices during the day. 
All you need is 10 snapping cubes or unifix cubes (or, however many cubes you want the child to “earn”)!  When the student is showing the POSITIVE behavior that you set for his or her goal, you hand him a unifix cube.  The child begins to form a “train” of cubes and snaps the cubes together as he collects more.
Are you thinking: “Ummmm….Christina, this is NOT anything new…!” 
You’re right! It’s not new, but I think that sometimes in this crazy world of Pinterest, when it seems as if we should feel guilty for not having extravagant,theme based EVERYTHING, it’s important to be reminded of the SIMPLE things we can do to make our classrooms sweeter and our lives easier!
“Why does it work if it’s so simple?”
Because this friend of mine is a fidgety friend who can’t attend to my directions without having something in his hands. We’ve been working on strategies to help him control his body and his fidgety hands when he is at the carpet or in an assembly, for example.
Collecting cubes for his individual behavior plan allows him to fidget and “play” with the cubes while he’s listening. I realize that may be SUPER distracting for some teachers.  But I know he is learning and taking in what I’m saying because I have recognized this is his way of coping. He can pull the cubes apart and snap them back together quietly while he is listening.  Do you ever doodle while you are in a PD workshop but yet you are still listening to the speaker? Kids are no different! Moving his hands and playing with an object often helps our brain focus on the task at hand. Sometimes kids need to DO something as they are listening to you! So….let them! 🙂
I keep the cubes on my desk to remind myself to pass them out to the student frequently throughout the day.  When my friend earns 10 cubes for his train, he gets to go to the treasure chest (This was a prize that he chose on his own.)!! 🙂
I hope this was an easy and fast little behavior tip for you to use in your classroom! Individual behavior plans are often a great tool for helping kiddos thrive in our classrooms!
Thanks for letting me share with you!
I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Similar Posts


  1. I see from your Facebook post that you are using Heinemann's Comprehension Toolkit. Could you share what else your school uses for literacy instruction for your grade? This looks to focus mostly on nonfiction. Do you have separate products for phonics instruction? Or Grammar? Or Writing? Looking to flush out what we are using at our school. Thanks!

  2. Love this idea! I have a kiddo that sounds just like yours. I like the idea of the blocks because it does allow him to fidget but pay attention. My kiddo and I talked yesterday about building a train and what it means. He responded really well. Do you start each day at the beginning or do you allow him to continue to build his train over a few days until he has reached 10?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *