Well, I have survived my first seven weeks of teaching. I'm so grateful to have this job and finally be a part of this wonderful profession. It took me over a year to find this job, so even on challenging days I am happy. This past week, however, was very challenging. I feel like classroom management has become a serious issue for some of my classes. The strangest thing is that I feel like half of my classes are doing fairly well and half of my classes are chaotic. During the classes that are well behaved, I feel like a wonderful teacher. I work hard to come up with creative lesson ideas and the students respond by participating and working well together. After the more challenging classes, I feel tired and like a failure. I've been trying to think of how half of my classes could be so different. I think that part of the problem is that my student teaching experience was completely different. I taught in a school with a very different demographic and I taught a class of honors ninth graders. Classroom management was very easy and there were very few behavior issues. Now, I'm teaching a tenth grade World Civilization classes. I think that I took the wrong approach as far as classroom management is concerned. I have been treating the class the same way managed my student teaching class. I've been expected the students to act and respond the same way and they just aren't. There are three main behavioral issues that I'm having a hard time dealing with. The first is talking during class. I'm not talking about a few students having conversations. Sometimes it feels like all of the students are just talking away when I'm trying to start class. Both of these classes are the last class of the day and right after lunch so it's not that surprising but I feel like it's taking longer and longer to get the class to settle down. I've tried just waiting and staring students down. In the past couple weeks, that's worked great but I feel like the issue its getting worse. The second issue is with students yelling out inappropriately. It's not that they are swearing or anything (though sometimes they are). It's more that they are yelling things that don't make sense. In the past week, they've been trying to take control of the class discussion by answering questions with responses that almost make sense to get some attention. They will make a comment that technically has to do with the discussion but clearly doesn't make sense and the class will laugh. This causes even more students to participate in the answering and within seconds it seems, the class is in chaos and I have to struggle to get the discussion back on track. Lastly, there is a large number of students getting out of their seats during class work. I feel like I am constantly reminding students to remain seated in their assigned seats. Last week, I had a talk with my students and introduced an incentive program. I tried to stay positive and began the discussion by listing the ways they were doing well. Then I talked about the ways they could improve. I talked about having a class "party" on the day of the review. We would play review games and I would bring treats. I also have the students seated in rows and I have started to give points to the best behaved rows. I silently walk over to a part on the side board and mark the points throughout class. Each unit, members of the winning row will receive a full sized candy bar. This has seemed to work really well in some of my classes and only okay in others. What are some ways I can regain control of my classes? Are there any tips or suggestions to make these challenging classes a better learning environment? I am starting to feel panicked and frustrated. Any advice would be wonderful and helpful. Thanks!