Relations Between Instructional Practices and On-Task Behavior in Classrooms Serving American Indian Students

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Achievement disparities between American Indian students and non-American Indian peers are persistent and well documented. Student engagement is a promising target for intervention given its relation to academic achievement. This study investigated the relation between specific teacher practices (opportunities to respond [OTRs], praise, and reprimands) and classroom on-task behavior in an urban, public K–8 school that serves primarily American Indian students. OTRs and praise were positively associated with student on-task behavior, whereas reprimands were negatively associated with on-task behavior. Results from multilevel logistic regression indicated that OTRs significantly increased the likelihood that a classroom was highly on-task, whereas the reprimands significantly decreased the likelihood. Praise did not have a significant effect after controlling for the other variables in the model. Results are interpreted in a context of evidence-based instructional practices for increasing OTRs and praise, decreasing reprimands, and ultimately enhancing on-task behavior in an urban classrooms serving primarily American Indian youth.



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Journal of Applied School Psychology