Besides teaching a class of 20 to 30 students, a teacher also
needs to have skills in keeping the classroom contained. Classroom
management is a big part of a teacher's job, and having tips for
maintaining a better classroom environment is key. So, take a
look at the 10 tips mentioned below that are geared to help teachers
in this way.
Develop a compliment chain. Start a chain of either paper
or paper clips. Explain to your students that every time you notice
someone in the class behaving extraordinarily, you will add a
segment to the chain. When the chain reaches a certain point,
you will reward the entire class with a prize or a special snack.
You may even consider adding segments to the chain if another
teacher compliments one of your students. You can start the students
off with one or two segments to get them motivated to continue
Classroom setup option. Try arranging the chairs and tables
in your classroom into a three-sided shape that forms a square.
With this setup, every student is in the first row, and this means
you can move around the room and keep your eye on the entire class
at the same time. Studies have shown that with the more typical
chair and table setups, the further back a student sits from the
front of the room, the more likely bad behavior arises. If you
need to set your chairs and tables up for a cooperative learning
environment, you can do so easily within two minutes.
Classroom scavenger hunt. To help transition students
into a new school year, invite parents and students to your classroom
for an "Open House." Play a scavenger hunt game with the parents/children
whereby they have to things around the room, such as a clock,
a poem, their name on a desk, etc. Make yourself the last item
they have to find. This will make the parents/children feel comfortable
with where things are in the room and make the first day of school
Establish rules upfront. Give your students the advantage
to make good behavior practice decisions themselves by telling
them the rules of your classroom upfront. Keep the rules short.
Discuss with them why these rules are important.
Learn your students names quickly.The quicker you are
able to remember the names of your students, the easier it will
be to control classroom management. Play name games with your
students in the beginning of they year, so you learn them quickly.
Being able to call on a student who is disrupting the class will
be much more effective, if you are not stumbling to remember what
that student's name is.
Be firm and then let go. Some teachers find it much better
to be firm and consistent at the beginning of the year, not letting
students get away with much of anything. While some students will
feel this is a mean teacher, other students will like the security
that they feel when their teacher is able to keep the classroom
in order. As the year progresses, you can certainly let down your
guard a bit, but still be consistent with reinforcing your rules.
Red light/green light system. Set up a bulletin board
with a traffic theme. Give each student a pocket on the bulletin
board with their name on the pocket. In the pocket place a red,
yellow, and green card, respectively. Let the students start off
with a green card every morning. If a student misbehaves or is
un-attentive in class, change their light to yellow. If bad behavior
persists, turn it to red. If a child gets a red light on any given
day, send a note home for the parents to sign and for the child
to bring back the next day.
Use poster to make a point. Find retail posters that
you can hang around your room that point out positives. Rules
are generally made to react to undesired behaviors. With the use
of positive posters, your students will be reading things to build
them. Rules are certainly necessary, and should be in every classroom,
but sprinkle some positives around your room, too!
Create an "All About Me" board. Each week pick a handful
of students who have displayed exceptionally good behavior in
class. Tell these students to bring in pictures of themselves
and of anything that they want to show-off to the class. Hang
these pictures on this special board that showcases them. This
will make every student in the class want to get their name and
pictures on the board, so they will all try to display good behavior
at one point or another.
Use points to make a point. If your class is having a
hard time staying quiet, try using this point system. Make a chart
and give each student 20 points to start the day off with. If
a student is having a hard time staying quiet, subtract points
in increments of 5 points. If a student is left with 0 points,
then you can send a note home to the parents. At the end of the
class each day, add up all of the student points as one number.
Set a goal for students to reach a given number of points for
the week. If they meet the goal, hand out small prizes like stickers
or candy. If they do not meet the goal for the week, the entire
class gets nothing.