Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Classroom Management Strategies

Classroom Management is a skill best served cold. By that I mean that it is best learned as you actually apply your strategies to a real classroom. 

You can certainly learn strategies and methodologies in teaching training classes in undergrad and graduate level classes. However, you don't really know how it is going to work out until you apply it. 

Management strategies are like fine suits, you need to tailor it to fit your needs and allow it to have enough flex in it to adapt to various situations. 

I have had my share of failures and successes and have learned a lot over the years. I am still learning and do not have a perfect class by any means. I have discovered a few things over the years and would like to share them with you.

1. Get to know your students as individuals, invest in them and express concern for their concerns and they will respond to you.

2. Respect your students and treat them as you would like to be treated. This is the classic "Golden Rule" but it is often forgotten by teachers. If you want to challenge yourself, take everything you want the students to do and expect the same of yourself. If you want your students to do their homework and take time doing their work you need to take time grading it and providing genuine feedback. If you want the students to dismiss quietly and remain orderly in the hall, provide them an example of this as you pass your colleagues in the hall. 

3. Keep clear and consistent rules. Let students know your expectations and the consequences for those expectations and stick to them. 

4. Learn what motivates your students and build that into your curriculum. 

5. Highlight good behavior in your classroom and let students know how proud you are of them when they have made good choices. 

Keep it positive and get to know your students! You can do it!