When I use this in my classroom this is the procedure. If a student acts out inappropriately for some reason they first get some sort of warning (depending on the offense, grade level, offender, etc). Then after a warning or two they get moved to another place, especially if what they are doing is touching or talking with someone else when they shouldn’t be. For younger kids they might get time in the “rest chair” my version of a time out or safe seat. The last move is towards the door. There’s a spot in my room near the door. By this point I usually have a private conversation with my kid about their consequences and how they need to change their behavior. When they continue to act out, it’s time for the think sheet.
I hand out our think sheet to the student and tell them to go to the closest buddy room to fill out and complete the paperwork. As a specialist team we agreed that when a student acts out in another person’s room we’ll be the “buddy room,” meaning that we’ll be their place to cool down so that they’re no longer in the situation or with their class. We print these think sheets on lime green paper so that if a student walks into our room while we’re teaching holding a piece of paper in that color, we know immediately what they’re there to do and how we need to respond.
The art room is right next door and the library is just down the hall, so I always have a place to send a student. The offender then has to go to that room to be removed from the situation in my room, must talk with the buddy teacher in the buddy room, finish the paperwork and then come back. When a student comes to me from the art room or library I usually sit them down and give them about 5-10 minutes to finish the work. Then I check on them and if their answers aren’t sufficient or on target they have to keep working.
A couple of times a student has told me that they will not go to the buddy rooms or they plead with me to do the think sheet in my room. I tell them, “You’ve lost the music room as an option. You can either work in the art room or you can fill this out in the office. It’s your choice, but the music room is no longer a choice you can make. I gave you chances (and I list what happened) but you didn’t respond so now you need to fill out this think sheet in another place. The buddy room or the office are your choices.”
Usually the think sheet works for us. I have had students who I have to send to the office to fill it out and I’ll tell you that kids would much rather fill it out in the art room or library instead of with the principal.
The think sheet provides a prompt, a guided response, and paperwork to document what happened. I also add my notes on there to remind myself what happened, how it happened, and when it happened in case I need to go and refer to this later. It’s nice to have these if this becomes a regular issue with this student and they need documentation.
You can download the template that we use for our think sheet for FREE at my TPT store.