Hints to Avoid Problems with Youth

  • Make young people aware of your expectations.
  • Be prepared for your work, and think ahead about your response to “common” behavior problems.
  • Hold teenagers accountable for their behavior.
  • Do not make empty “threats”, such as “Stop yelling or you will be kicked out of the program”. You can give the teen appropriate information about the consequences of misbehavior.
  • Don’t get into debates with teens about your decisions; explain your decision and stick to it. However, if you feel you may have over-reacted, be honest with the teen and change your decision if YOU feel it was out of line. Be careful about “idle threats.”
  • Share concerns or questions with other staff members; i.e., get ideas on how to handle a student who repeatedly exhibits the same misbehavior.