CI.1.6. Proper behaviour & Decision making



Meaning and types of behavior
Behavior is the way a person does things in a particular situation. Given different situations, people may show qualities such as politeness, harshness, cruelty, co-operation, envy and arrogance.

A person’s behavior can change depending on his or her mood, place or person he or she is dealing with. For example:
(a)   Mood – when a person is happy, he or she behaves differently from the way he or she behaves when angry or sad.
(b)   Place – a student in a classroom behaves differently from he or she behaves in the play-ground.
(c)    Persons one is dealing with – a student behaves differently when dealing with fellow students or friends, from the way when dealing with teachers, parents, relatives or strangers.

There are two types of behavior. These are:
1.      Proper behavior, also known as good behavior.
2.      Improper behavior, also known as bad behavior.

Proper behavior
This is the behavior which is acceptable to the society. Example of such behaviors includes honesty, love, kindness, openness, obedience, sympathy and co-operation.

This type of behavior may originate from various areas in the society. These include:
1.      Parents – good parents guide their children toward proper behavior.
2.      Mass media – radio, television, news paper and other media have programmes or articles which teach people good behavior.
3.      Proper education – people who get proper formal as well as informal education usually have good behavior.
4.      Good friends – good friends guide and counsel each other so that they can behave properly.
5.      Religious teaching – people who follow proper religious teaching behave properly in the society.

Elements of proper behavior
1.      Respect for parents, relatives and other people.
2.      Use of proper language. This means not using abusive language or any word that make people angry.
3.      Taking part in community activities such as funerals, wedding and environmental conservation
4.      Proper dressing. This refers to the style of dressing which is socially acceptable.
5.      Working hard by spending time in the positive and productive way.
6.      Helping others where and when it is necessary.

Importance of behaving properly
Members of the society are encouraged to behave properly. The following are some of the benefits of proper behaving in the society:

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1.      There is unity, peace and harmony in the society since there is respect among people.
2.      The members in the society are helpful and co-operate with each other.
3.      Everyone in the society is free to exercise rights and fulfill their responsibilities
4.      There is development and prosperity in the society as people work hard.

Improper behavior
This is behavior which is not acceptable in the society. Examples of improper behavior include:
(a)  Use of abusive language.
(b)  Prostitution.
(c)  Taking illicit drugs.
(d)  Laziness.
(e)  Fighting.
(f)   Stealing and robbery.
(g)  Causing trouble and disturbing the peace.
(h)  Disrespect for school rules.
(i)    Disrespect for parents, elders and relatives.
(j)    Arrogance that is, being rude because one feels that he or she more important than the others.
Improper behavior can be result of many factors. Some of these factors are:

1.      Lack of parental care and guide: some parents do not spend enough time with their children to know their problems. When a child lacks guidance from his or her parents he or she may develop bad habits.
2.      The mass media: television, radio, the internet and the news paper play a great role in changing people behavior, especially young people. Some of the programmes and article expose young people to violence, prostitution and other social evil young people may be tempted to copy what they see, hear and read in the mass media.
3.      Poverty: some people may be forced to engage in bad habits because of their poor economic status. They may steal or engage in prostitution to earn money.
4.      Drunkenness: drinking alcohol excessively can make some people lose control of his or her action resulting in improper behavior.
5.      Lack of proper education: education is an important tool in changing people’s behavior. Ignorance can lead to improper behavior.
6.      Friends: some friends are not good. They can lead one into bad habits like truancy, stealing, use of abusive language, drugs, prostitution and absenteeism from school.

Consequences of improper behavior
Improper behavior may result in bad consequences. Some of these are:

1.      Spreading of HIV and AIDS due to prostitution and sharing of needles for injection of drugs.
2.      Crime such as robbery and rape.
3.      Social problems such as drug abuse, homosexuality and corruption.
4.      Family problems such as lack of food, unwanted pregnancies and early marriages.
5.      Poverty, when people do not work and therefore do not produce wealth.
6.      Lawlessness in the society as people does not respect each other.

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How to control improper behavior

Several measures can be taken to control improper behavior. Some of these measures are:
1.      Mass education on good behavior among member of the society.
2.      Parents need to be closer to their children and spend quality time with them, counseling and guiding them.
3.      People who belong in different faith should adhere to their religious teachings on good behavior.
4.      The government should enforce the existing to law to curb anti-social behavior.
5.      The importation of pornographic material should be banned.
6.      Schools and colleges should educate young people on how to behave properly in the society.
7.      The government should ensure all children get formal education. Parents should be encouraged to take their children to school.

Responsible decision-making
decision is the choice in which an individual makes after thinking through different option on a given situation. Decision-making is the one way of solving problems.
Responsible decision-making involve making a choice after carefully considering all option available and using a particular criteria to make the best choice.

Importance of responsible decision-making
Decision making is important for the following reasons:

1.      It leads to the effecting and implementation of undone tasks.
2.      It is the only way to make difficult and dangerous decisions.
3.      It builds a sense of commitment when members of the society are involved in making decision that affects them.
4.      It facilitates proper utilization of available resources.
5.      It ensures sense of equality. This is due to the equal participation of members in decision making.
6.      It ensures efficiency because member of the society make decision to issues that concern them.
7.      It creates the sense of collective responsibility in carrying out tasks and policies.
8.      It encourages a person to achieve what he or she has planned to do.

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Skills needed to make responsible decisions
There are six steps that help a person to make good decisions. These are:

1.      Identifying the problem: problem here means the issue a person needs to make decision on. For example, a form one student scores low marks in civics.
2.      Listing the possible solution to the problem: at this stage the person collects information on possible solution solutions to his her problem. In our example the possible solution can be
(a)   To take part in group discussion
(b)   To increase the amount of time spent studying civics.
(c)    To get extra tuition from the teacher.
3.      Starting the criteria to use: at, this stage the person analyzes the principles to consider in selecting a particular solution. That means he or she thinks of advantages and disadvantages of each solution listed below.
4.      Evaluation: to evaluate is to form an opinion of something after a carefully consideration. In this case, the person forms an opinion on available alternatives in order to make decision. At this stage the stage the person compares the advantages and disadvantages of each alternative solution. In our example above, the student should consider the chances of success or failure in choosing one solution over the others listed. On basis of evaluation, a decision is made.
5.      Making decision: the person selects the best solution and act on it. In our example a student can decide to take part in group discussion.
6.      Checking the results: this means assessing the choice made to determine whether the decision that was made has worked to solve the problem. If the problem has not been solved, then the person goes over and list of possible solutions against and tries another alternative to see whether it works.

Chapter summary
Behavior is the way person does things in a particular situation. There are two types of behavior: proper behavior and improper behavior.
Responsible decision-making involves making a choice after a carefully considering all options available and using particular criteria to make best choice.
There are six steps that help a person to make a good decision. These are:
1.      Identifying the problem.
2.      Listing the possible solution to the problem.
3.      Starting the criteria use.
4.      Evaluation
5.      Making decision.
6.      Checking the results.


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