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Say it show it check it

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What is it?

'Say it show it check it' is a general strategy that is designed to teach classroom rules to students in a systematic and highly explicit fashion. It is not designed to address a particular behaviour, or function of behaviour; rather it is a general technique to support students to learn the skills required to understand and follow classroom rules or expectations.

'Say it, show it, check it' fits with general teaching guidelines around positive behaviour support.

How do I use it?

Each rule in the classroom is explained to students using a three-pronged approach: 'say', 'show' and 'check'. Steps involved in implement the strategy include:

  1. Choose a small number of rules to focus on (2 – 3 rules, no more than 5).
  2. Explain rules to the students ('say').
  3. Provide students with example of following the rules and what it looks like when the rules are not followed e.g. show the students putting up your hand to answer a question in class (following the rule) and shouting out the answer without putting up your hand (not following the rule) ('show').
  4. Students can practice adhering to the rules and demonstrating what non-adherence looks like.
  5. Check understanding of the rule by demonstrating a violation of the rules and asking students to identify how the rule was broken ('check'). Show the rule correctly again and ask the student to explain how they know the rule was followed (e.g. putting hand up, waiting quietly to be asked).

This strategy is best utilised with a small number of explicitly stated rules. Make sure the rules are clearly worded so that students can understand and follow the rules. It is important that all students are able to demonstrate the desired positive behaviour. All elements of the program will need to be matched to the language and cognitive abilities of the students in the class, with appropriate modifications made to cater for those with language or cognitive impairment.

Age group

Say it, show it, check it requires a level of cognitive and language ability and is likely to be more appropriate for students in the primary school age range.

PreschoolPossibly, with accommodations made for language and cognitive levels
P-2Yes  - consider the language and cognitive levels of all students
3-6Yes  - consider the language and cognitive levels of all students
High schoolDepending on the students; this may not be an appropriate whole class strategy

Where can I learn more?

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Last updated 24 September 2020