1st Year Teacher Not Starting Good

Discussion in 'Behavior Management' started by bakingfunmom, Aug 31, 2014.

  1. bakingfunmom

    bakingfunmom Rookie

    Aug 10, 2011
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    Aug 31, 2014

    :unsure:I am a first year teacher and would appreciate any advice for behavior management. I was hired a week before school started for my first 2nd grade class. I suppose I wasn't as prepared for the little details as I could have been. I knew mgmnt would be an issue for me because I am generally too nice and kids pick up on this. In addition, I have to wear a microphone to teach because of my low voice due to a surgery; both factors are probably not helping me. Either way, I must do what I can to change the mgmnt. because I know you can't teach kids if you can't manage them. We are heading into our 3rd week and I am concerned. I have many students who call out and talk and don't listen to requests. I use a hand signal, two different bells and lights if I must. We spent the first week and part of 2nd learning procedures. I've made noise charts, we've practiced with noise level but I still have a very noisy class. Last week I had 2 days where I almost cried (I contained it) it was part complete fatigue and frustration. Partially because I know I must get this in order soon as the first weeks set the tone for the year. I have reverted to raising my voice and showing my frustration which I'm not proud of; that doesn't do anything to help create the environment I want. I don't want to yell, not only because it is wrong but I am not supposed to yell since I only have one vocal cord. It strains me, drains me and I did not become a teacher to raise my voice at kids. I need to find something that works; I just don't know what. I have a behavior chart I use but I am finding that it takes allot to manage it. I mean allot of my class talks out of turn and acts inappropriate and I could spend all day going up and down that chart and It doesn't seem to be beneficial. I also feel like I'm focusing on the negative too much. I've had students crying at the end of the day because they are on red and they know they will get in serious trouble. I kind of feel like the second week of school is kind of soon to be reprimanding and calling parents, isn't it?I've also noticed the few good kids in the class getting kind of bored and tired of not being able to learn due to distractions. I have spoken to some teachers who use class dojo. Has anyone used this program? It seems beneficial. We also had a class meeting and my students are really into class dojo. I just am unsure how to utilize it. I'd like to get rid of my clip chart and use dojo but I wonder if that makes sense or if its just confusing to the kids. I really like that with class dojo its does all the tracking for you and the parents get a report. I just worry about overusing any one system. My clip chart gave points as you went up for positive traits. I suppose I could devise a system of positive rewards when certain points were accumulated. I suppose I want to know if you thing its confusing to children to have a system change after two weeks? Should I get rid of my clip chart? Its allot to manage and I find I get really frustrated with kids and have them move their clip sometimes without warning. OR I have even reverted to thinking about not wearing my voice machine one day. My voice would be very low but they would have to listen really hard and It would force me to not raise my voice. This is a possible option. I've moved my desk arrangement to see if this also helps. Thanks for your time; any advice is greatly appreciated.
  3. LovetoteachPREK

    LovetoteachPREK Companion

    Mar 30, 2011
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    Sep 2, 2014

    I am by no means an expert on this, as I posted in the first grade thread about controlling excess talking, but here are some things that are and aren't working for me.

    First of all, I hate behavior charts. I think they are too much trouble for the teacher, and once a kid gets to red, then what's the point of being good? I know others like them, so take that for whatever its worth.

    I have one or two students model the appropriate way to get out materials and start working, and then see if everyone can do it. Or, if everyone is too noisy lining up, getting their things out, etc then we all put everything away and start over again.

    If I'm having trouble getting their attention, they know that I will start counting - softly. If I get to 10, they have wasted my time so I have to "waste" their recess time by having them sit silently for 1 minute before going out.

    Also, I don't like writing names on the board, so I tell them that I am writing down the names of the talkers and they will owe me time. All they have to do is see me start to scribble and they are very quiet!

    I did change my desk arrangement and I do try to build in times when talking is acceptable so they know when its important to be quiet.

    I don't have the same medical problems as you, but I still don't like raising my voice. Hope you find something that works for you.
  4. Loomistrout

    Loomistrout Devotee

    Dec 24, 2007
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    Sep 3, 2014

    Furniture arrangement is a good move (pardon pun). It's something you can do before students are in the room. Also, consider moving your desk. Arrangement to consider is one that allows you to move freely from student to student in fewest steps. Fred Jones refers to it as "working the crowd" or the simplest form of discipline by merely moving around and using your body. Where teachers get into trouble is trying to do discipline from across the room which usually ends up opening mouth with nag, nag, threat, punish. In these situations the teacher becomes the biggest disruptor in the room.

    Write and draw pictures to tell students what you want them to do. Teachers talk too much anyway. Go to the board, don't say a thing, and draw a quick graphic of, say, a paper with heading and arrow pointing to heading (you want them to head their papers). Stand and point. Don't say a thing. See what they do. The first student to follow your written directions write his/her name on the board. Then the next and so on until you get about six names (judgment). Some may think they are in trouble - the traditional reason for names on board - tell them not to worry you will explain later. At about five minutes before recess tell the five students with names on board they may stop working, take out materials for next hour (after recess) and work on a free time activity (something preferred and easy). Tell the rest of the class to keep working. Dismiss the six first for recess. Tell the rest of the class after recess you will, again, look to see who is on task and will write his/her name on the board for early free time and first dismissal next recess. There are no tokens to manage, clips to move, charts to fill out and you are training class to follow written directions.
  5. mrs.whatsit

    mrs.whatsit Rookie

    Jul 28, 2014
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    Sep 5, 2014

    I felt the same way my first year of teaching. Its a sharp learning curve but something I wish someone had told me earlier is that once you get classroom management down and build a positive culture in your class, your life is so much easier!

    Here are a few resources that will help you in classroom management!

    1. Teach Like a Champion! buy this book, its amazing
    2. PBIS is a great resource to learn how to create a positive behavior system
    3. Speaking of positive behavior systems, a great free app is called LiveSchool. It is a place to track and manage your point system. here is there website http://whyliveschool.com/
    4. They also have a great resource on setting up a point system http://liveschoolinc.com/wp-content...hers-Guide-to-a-Successful-Points-Program.pdf

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