Discipline Plan

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by bonges, Dec 7, 2008.

  1. bonges

    bonges Rookie

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    Dec 7, 2008

    I am a first year teacher and I am having a discipline issue in one of my classes. I know part of the issue is how I handled my class at the beginning of the year, as in I probably let them get away with more then I should have, but here I am and if anyone has advice for me that would be appreciated. My situation is that I have a number of students who show up almost everyday to my class but the do not do any work or participate. I have called some homes and spoken with those students and they are aware that they are failing my class but they do not seem to care. Now this is a problem because they are continually disruptive in my class and makes it increasingly more difficult to teach the rest of my class. Threatening their grade doesn't work because they are failing anyways, and I don't want to resort to sending them to the discipline office, though this is what I may end up having to do. If there is any help or advice for this situation please let me know.
     
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  3. Doug_HSTeach_07

    Doug_HSTeach_07 Comrade

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    Dec 7, 2008

    Hey fellow Illinois teacher! Your concerns are good ones. I have no idea what your "discipline plan" is, but I have a couple tips.

    - Kids will test a first-year teacher, as I'm sure you've found out. This is where you've got to shine. Calmly tell them what the plan is (warning, referral to office, detention with you, etc.) without any hesitation in your voice. If they see hesitation or uncertainty, they'll pounce all over it and won't take you seriously.

    - It's time to get firm, fair, and consistent. Dish out the punishment if you have to - they'll get the idea. I have to believe that if you begin sending some to the office, the rest of the kids will realize you mean business and might even back off. Also, you might want to tell your P or dean of students about some of their grades, so if they get kicked out the P can talk to them about increasing their grades.

    - Peer Pressure! Pull some of your athletes, leaders, and strong kids aside and tell them you need them more than ever. You'd be surprised at the power a couple influential kids can have. Sometimes if they say "shut up" to a couple problem students the results will be incredible.

    I hope these tips help. Good Luck!!
     
  4. CanukTeacher

    CanukTeacher Comrade

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    Dec 7, 2008

    If a kid believes that they cannot pass they will give up and make your life difficult. Make sure your students know that while you have expectations and won't put up with nonsense that they can still pass. This may mean that you reconsider how you determine term marks. In my neck of the woods we use "most recent and most consistent" rather than averages for grades.
     
  5. Sheba

    Sheba Companion

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    Dec 7, 2008

    Can you send the really indolent ones out of class and then make them do the lesson with you again after class?
     
  6. Engsis

    Engsis Rookie

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    Dec 8, 2008

    I'm sorry to hear you're having difficulty--my first year was extremely rough so I can empathize. If I were you, I would treat the first day you implement your new discipline plan as if it were the first day of school and completely start over. I would tell the students that we need to start over and learn the rules, procedures, and consequences of this classroom. Then, I would spend the next few days teaching these things. The students may be disrespectful and resistant in the beginning, but if you stick to it I think they'll start to fall in line. I also agree with the previous poster that you need to give failing students some hope that they can pass your class if they turn their behavior around. Clearly tell students specifically whatthey need to have accomplished or completed by the end of the marking period to at least pass.
     
  7. bonges

    bonges Rookie

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    Dec 8, 2008

    Thanks for the advice, I believe that my biggest problem was that I don't always follow through, or take it far enough. I usually end up letting an issue go because it was more worthwhile for me to actually teach instead of just trying to control the classroom. In the short run it was helpful but now I realize that I was just reinforcing bad habits and has hurt the classroom in the long run. I'll keep on fighting though :) Though the suggestions have all been very helpful.
     
  8. dtrim

    dtrim Rookie

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    Dec 10, 2008

    I agree with the posters who say that you should give them opportunities to pass the class.

    I'd go further and try to work on connections with these students. Pick the leader and work on him or her first. Talk to her privately and listen to her goals. What does she want to do in life? Try to align that with the curriculum or maybe give her a special project that will futher her life goals and give her credit in class. Make the connection both with her and with the curriculum.

    Once you've got the leader won over, meet with the others and connect with them as well.

    Be sure to remain positive in all your interations with these students and tell them that you're happy they've come to class. Even if you don't believe it, fake it.

    You might consider grading them where they are, skill-wise, and make it your goal to move them up to grade level instead of grading them against their peers. An A for these kids might reflect the best they could do at the time instead of the best work in the class.

    Best wishes for success!

    Diane
     
  9. MathNrd

    MathNrd Rookie

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    Dec 11, 2008

    I am far from an expert on classroom management but I will share my experiences with you. I went through a spell where I was ready to quit teaching because of "my students". I discussed this with my department head and convinced him to send me to a "Time to Teach" professional development. That training gave me some useful tools and more importantly reminded me of why I chose to become a teacher. I highly recommend "Time to Teach"
     
  10. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Dec 11, 2008

    Welcome to A to Z, MathNrd. Can you tell us more about "Time to Teach"?
     
  11. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Here is your fatal flaw. You cannot teach until you have control over the classroom. Disipline problems impeede your ability to teach, so therefore you should spend the time getting your classroom undercontrol FIRST, and worry about content later. If you do that, then you will gain back all the time, and then some, that you spent consistently enforcing a disipline plan.
     
  12. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Dec 12, 2008

    I really like Randy Sprick's CHAMPs program. We use it school-wide, but there were a few of us who started using it before the school used it. It's an instructional discipline program. I've been very pleased with it. I'll be happy to send you more information if you want. I'd need you to PM me your email address because I've got an information email stored on Outlook and it's got attachments, too.
     
  13. MathNrd

    MathNrd Rookie

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    Dec 16, 2008

    Time to Teach is its own classroom management system, which works for some and not for others depending on their teaching style, but the training also provided invaluable golden nuggets of wisdom and individual strategies that have made me a better classroom manager.

    Time to Teach was designed around the concept of eliminating the annoying behaviors that interrupt us from doing our job.
    The training is a little pricey but it is worth every penny. I recommend to people to get their district to send them to the training and then to use them as an in-house expert
    For more info related to the program I suggest doing a web search.
     
  14. CanukTeacher

    CanukTeacher Comrade

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    Dec 16, 2008

    A cheaper alternative to training (if its not in your budget) is getting some books. A good one is "Win-Win Discipline."
     
  15. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    Dec 16, 2008

    And an even cheaper alternative is to go online and check out all the FREE resources from Power Teaching. :)
     

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