Keep the lesson moving. If you have a forty-five minute period, plan three different activities. Try to get them up out of their seats at least once during the class period. Those students with pent up energy will thank you for it.
Don’t lecture for the whole period. Students who are actively engaged in a learning activity are generally not disrupting the class. Hands-on activities work great for vivacious classrooms.
Talk to your students. If you see them in the hall, in the cafeteria or at the grocery store, ask them how they are. If you see a student in the local newspaper, congratulate them. If they do something nice, tell them that you appreciate their kindness. This lets them know that you really do care about them.
When students are being disruptive by talking, poking, pulling or crumpling paper, go stand by them. This sends them a direct message to stop what they are doing. Most of the time they stop and get back to work.
When you have stood by the student, talked to the student and kept them busy with lessons, and they still are disruptive, take them in the hallway. Ask them, “Are you OK?” The students will crumble and tell you that they had a fight with their parents, didn’t get up on time or are having other issues. If they are defiant, send them on to the principal.