Urban School Behavior Management

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Ms.Holyoke, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Cohort

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    Apr 14, 2018

    I am currently student teaching in an urban school and one thing that I am working on is my behavior management. I will say that my classroom management has improved A LOT but I'm still struggling to see how I will be successful in my first year.

    Right now, I would say that most kids listen to me and I am able to handle the majority of behavior issues. The issue is that when I teach whole class lessons, my mentor is able to handle certain behavior issues (like the kid who comes in late yelling, etc.) so I don't have to slow down the whole class. She is able to pull these kids out and have a conversation with them. I was alone with the class yesterday and the behavior wasn't great which I expected because it was the last day before break. (I think part of the reason is that the kids expect free time the day before break which I don't like to give.) My mentor pulled a kid to make up work and it was frustrating to see how much behavior I had to deal with...which slowed down the class. I was able to handle it and go through the Do Now but it wasn't easy. In retrospect, I should have told kids they have the option to listen and participate or I can take their work and grade it for their last grade of quarter 3. I'm confused as to how I'm supposed to help kids with academics when it feels like I am constantly putting out fires. Yesterday, we had a girl who is a MAJOR behavior problem continue to harass someone to give her pen back, walk in and out of class, etc. and a kid who walked out of class, refused to put his phone away, and there are no consequences we can give these students. I wouldn't say that the behavior is much better when my mentor is there but I do have help handling it when she is there. When she taught a different subject yesterday, we had so many behavior issues and 6 write-ups so it isn't like the kids misbehave for me. The kids were working on stations yesterday and I felt like I was being pulled in a million different directions. I am glad that my classroom management has improved, but doing this by myself does worry me because I'm not sure if I'm ready. :(
     
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  3. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Apr 14, 2018

    What do you mean by, "and there are no consequences we can give these students."

    One thing I always say is we are probably in the only profession where there are so many obstacles to make doing what we were hired to do very difficult. Whether it's from behavior, time constraints, events (like assemblies, etc.), or putting out fires, actually getting to the teaching is not easy.
     
  4. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Cohort

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    Apr 14, 2018

    We don't have detention or any behavior management system. The only real consequence we can give students is calling home. We can write kids up but no action will be taken. I hope my school next year is more supportive.
     
  5. viola_x_wittrockiana

    viola_x_wittrockiana Comrade

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    Apr 14, 2018

    I've been there. I did my student teaching in a very similar setting. The only consequence we could give was an ISS for either our period or all day depending on the severity. ISS had their hands full just trying to keep the kids from assaulting each other, so they were allowed to sleep or color instead of doing school work. If a kid didn't like your class, intentional misbehavior was a way out. Things were a tiny bit better for me though, because my CT had an admin cert, so we could institute our own system to an extent. Lunch detentions are what were effective for us. The other thing that worked was doing binder work instead of centers when they couldn't manage working in small groups. Calling home was a mixed bag. Some kids got royally reamed for what they'd done, others had parents swearing at us for bothering them. A behavior competition between classes cut down on the minor stuff (swearing, being late, talking over each other) a bit.
     
  6. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Cohort

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    Apr 14, 2018

    ^
    We could give a lunch detention but my mentor (understandably) doesn't want to give up her lunch! I wouldn't either next year.
     
  7. rpan

    rpan Comrade

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    Apr 15, 2018

    There are things you can do within the classroom such as lunchtime detention (sometimes you have to make some sacrifices, it doesn’t have to be everyday but if you say you are going to then you should follow through) or withholding “fun” activities until students show they can follow instructions or do assigned tasks. You can also do a version of PAT that students who don’t follow instructions or live up to classroom expectations don’t earn the privilege to do.
    Over time you will get better at behaviour management, especially when you can set expectations from the beginning and run your classroom the way you want from the get go.
     
  8. Pi-R-Squared

    Pi-R-Squared Devotee

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    Apr 15, 2018

    Try to make it their choice. Choose to misbehave and you choose to spend lunch away from friends and with the teacher.
     
  9. Been There

    Been There Comrade

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    Apr 17, 2018

    Do you work at a middle school? Every American school needs to have a school-wide behavior management system with clear and consistent consequences for chronic offenders. Effective programs place the burden of responsibility on students and their parents and not on the backs of teachers. If such a system doesn't exist at your school, why don't teachers demand that a student discipline plan be discussed at your next staff meeting? I'm beginning to get a negative impression of your administrators. Unfortunately, I've Been There!!!
     

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