Focusing Together is an instructional program that promotes self-management skills in association with a set of classroom expectations that defines responsible work habits, respect, and emotional and physical safety. Students learn how to live by a set of learning community expectations; how their choice of whether or not to abide by those expectations affects their personal power; and how to follow a self-management strategy for staying on task when they must work independently or in small groups.
In research studies, students in experimental classes reduced the number of off-task behaviors during the time they were expected to work independently (from a mean of 21 to a mean of 4.5 per 45-minute period; comparison class means were 21.9 and 18.3). Students in experimental classes were more pleased with the classroom management procedures used by their teachers. Teachers in experimental classes reported a 72 percent reduction of rule infractions, while comparison teachers reported no change. Teachers in experimental classes also were more satisfied with the program and their students' behavior.Research: Focusing Together