Tips for Successful Classroom Management
Teaching is a noble profession and the success of the students is somehow affected by how the teachers discipline or manage their classrooms. If you are new to the teaching profession, you may find it exciting especially on your first day of class. You are so eager to share your knowledge and skills to your students and implement activities that will somehow contribute to the growth of the students. Managing a class is not that easy and these top 10 tips for successful classroom management need to be practiced daily in order to make it work.
Build a Community
Making your students feel welcome and connected even at their very first day in school will make them feel welcome and wanted. Greet them at the door, talk to each of them whenever possible and associate their names with their faces in order to address them more personally and directly. If students will see that their teacher cares for them, they will be more motivated to behave properly and cooperate in the classroom activities.
Establish a Learnable Set of Skills
Often, teachers think that managing a classroom is easy and that they have the skills to do so. Successful classroom management is acquired through skills necessary to achieve this goal. Students want to test their teachers in terms of their patience and consistency in their set rules or guidelines. In order to establish a good first impression with the students, create a positive tone and show them that you believe in them. Be consistent in your approach and the students will learn to respect and trust in you.
Establish a Positive Relationship within the Classroom
Students who misbehave only want to test you or just needs your attention. An advice will be to isolate the misbehaving student from the rest of the class, instead of you separating yourself. Directly address a student when he is not participating or is causing troubles which might affect the others. Do not address the class as a whole if you are disappointed in only one or two students because it will have an impact on the performance of the rest who want to do well in school.
Design a Safe, Well-Managed and Friendly Environment
A well-organized classroom will create a positive learning community for the students and the teacher. At first sight of their classroom, students must feel welcome and that they belong. Supplies and handouts must be accessible and that they will see their works on the bulletin boards. Students may even take part in designing their classroom which must also be suitable for learning and is within the standards. They can participate in the hanging of wall photos or make the charts and posters by hand. If they see that their classroom is a work of their own efforts, they will feel more valued and will show importance in going to the classroom every day. Another thing to consider is the overall ambiance of the room. Make sure that rooms are properly lit and that the desks are arranged that will allow interaction between students and the teacher.
Be Generous in Giving Praises and Recognition
Praise is a powerful tool which can transform a student’s image, reinforce values and uplift the whole class. When giving praise, be specific and encourage the behavior or achievement that is repeatable. You can scribble a note on the bottom of your student’s test paper or publicly acknowledge him in front of the classroom.
Involve Students in Setting Rules, Routines, Norms and the Consequences
On the first day of class, facilitate and guide the students in setting the rules and routines in order to come up with a social contract. Let them decide what must be done or the consequences for students who come in late or those who are constantly repeating a negative behavior towards their classmates or peers. Be specific in certain areas that need disciplinary actions or consequences so that students will know how to behave and treat one another. An example could be writing an apology letter or a fix-it plan to come up with a suitable and effective consequence.
Simply asking your students how they did with their homework will be a priceless tool for professional development. You can also do surveys in order to evaluate yourself in the students’ perspective.
Be Creative in the Teaching and Learning Strategies
Do not just focus on giving a lecture in the classroom which will make them bored and sleepy. Be creative. You can do small group projects, role-playing, journaling, debates, and fish bowl discussions or even go on a field trip. Students will be more engaged and actively participate if they are involved as they learn.
Create a Variety of Communication Channels
Some students are just too shy to talk or voice out their opinions and feelings. Establish a way of communicating with your students by placing a suggestion box at the front door for students to leave anonymous notes about anything that they notice in the classroom or you can personally talk to a student in private right after class or in between periods. You can also give them your email address so they can send you their questions, concerns and suggestions. Students can also learn from their classmates like having tea parties as part of a classroom learning activity wherein they could talk and share just about anything. When doing group activities, be sure to mix the groupings so students will have the chance to have a more personal interaction with others.
Partner with Parents and Guardians
Involving parents and guardians in the students’ school activities may be difficult as most parents are very busy with so many things. However, a connection between school and home will greatly benefit your students. You can ask for the phone numbers of the parents or set up a website where parents can browse over to have updates with their child’s school activities and assignments. During parents’ night or open house, hand out calling cards so that parents will also feel that they can communicate with you if they have concerns regarding their kids. You can make “good” calls to students’ homes telling their parents of their achievements and other positive things before you open up a bad news that will establish a relationship between you and the parents.
Creating a successful and effective classroom management is not an easy task. It is a challenge for most teachers but the key to achieving your goals is to cultivate, connect and preserve affirmative reputations for your students.