Logical Consequences - Adler and Dreikurs

Alfred Adler developed the theory called Individual Psychology.  This philosophy is based on helping a person to determine their personal goals in order to resolve their own issues in life.  Rudolf Dreikurs, who was a student of Adler, built on this philosophy and tailored it toward students.  He focused on the concept of diplomatic resolution versus using coercion as a key to dealing with student behavior and an important part of this is the use of logical consquences.

Individuals need to understand that every action has a consequence.  If we want to avoid the unpleasant results of our actions then we need to behave in a way which will produce favorable results.  Logical consequences offers the child a clear and logical choice to their behavior.  The child must perceive that he has a choice and accept the relationship of his choice to what followed.  The consequences are determined by the adult, but the child must experience it as logical.

Logical consequences is giving choices to a student when there is a misbehavior.  It is important to note that the use of logical consequences is most effective when a relatively healthy relationship already exists.  It is mandatory to spend a considerable amount of time putting the mechanisms in place at the beginning of the school year. 

Example of logical consequences:  A child is pushing his or her way down the stairs.  You can offer the child the choice of not pushing or returning to the classroom until all of the other students have left.  Another example is if the student is constantly late you can offer them the choice of being on time or standing next to the teacher for the entire period.

Presenting students with choices empowers them to take ownership of their behavior.