Closed Requests

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Prefacing requests with ‘Thank you’ has a marked effect on how the request is received.

  • ‘Thank you for putting your bag on the hook’ or
  • ‘Thank you for dropping your gum in the bin’.

The trust in the student that this statement implies, combined with the clarity of the expectation, often results in immediate action without protest. It is almost a closed request which leaves no ‘hook’ to hold onto and argue with.

A similar technique can be applied to requests for students to make deadlines or attend meetings that they would rather ignore, salesmen would call it an ‘assumed close’

‘When you come today get as close to 3.30 as you can so we can resolve this quickly and both get home in good time’. As opposed to, ‘Meet me at my room at the end of school’.

‘When you hand in your coursework next Monday, meet me by the staff room so that I can store it securely’.  As opposed to, ‘I want your coursework in on Monday’.

You are assuming and encouraging a positive response; making it awkward for the student to respond negatively.