Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Elvis Approach To Classroom Management

The Elvis Approach To Classroom Management

Through research and personal experience I have learned that classroom management is the most important factor in determining the academic success of students.  Effective teachers understand the importance of building relationships with their students.  The teachers actions in a classroom have twice the impact on student achievement as do school policies regarding curriculum, assessments, and community involvement (Marzano, 2003).

I decided to write my classroom management tips and tricks with the help of Elvis.

Students cannot learn in a chaotic classroom that lack procedures, routines, and expectations.  Effective teachers plan and prepare for the success of their students. Teachers should have an assignment ready when the students walk through the door.  Idle time in the classroom leads to behavior problems.  I have learned through experience, that having a routine provides clear expectations.  I teach language arts.  Every morning before my students enter the classroom, their journal, assignment, and pencil has been placed on their desk.

My students know what to expect from the minute they walk into my classroom. I teach and model this daily starting the first day of school.  It doesn't take the children long to learn the classroom expectations. Within 2-3 weeks, my students (all of them) come in quietly and start their daily routine.  Many students lack structure and routine in their home environment.  They do not know what to expect next.  In my classroom, my students clearly understand the expectations of the classroom.  In 17 years teaching, I can count the number of office referrals I have written on my hands.

Lack of routines and procedures lead to chaos.

Prepare Routines and procedures for the following:

  • Arrival to class
  • Transitions (hallway, switching classes, etc.)
  • Answering question
  • Lunch count
  • Daily routines
  • Quiet time
Procedures must be stated, explained, demonstrated, and practice in the classroom.

Make learning meaningful and important to the students.  Let's face the truth, while each of us may teach a particular grade or subject matter, that does not mean all children are coming to us on the same instructional level.  We know that there are different learning styles, and as a teacher it is our responsibility to meet the needs of each and every student that walks through our door.  This can be an overwhelming responsibility for the instructional leader.

Children will want to learn if you Shake, Rattle, and Roll and do things different than the traditional classroom.

Here are a few things we do in my classroom to help keep children motivated and excited about learning:

Children need to explore and engage in activities and lessons that are beneficial for their development.  Expecting children to conform to a standardized list of expectations is not realistic.  As teachers we want to help our students learn positive behaviors.  It is important for teachers to focus on positive behaviors.  It is important for teachers to monitor behavior and practice skills that minimize classroom disruptions.  Eye contact, proximity, and body language are free tools teachers can use to promote the desired behaviors.