Help! Out of control class!

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by robinsky, Sep 29, 2008.

  1. robinsky

    robinsky Rookie

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    Sep 29, 2008

    I'm a new 7th grade teacher, and one of my classes is out of control. The kids talk over me, make jokes and laugh, get out of their seats, etc. I started writing their names on the board, and that quiets them down some, but there are so many talking it is hard to keep up. There are 34 kids in the class, and it is a small room, so they are right next to each other. My other 4 classes are fine (though they are not quite as big), but this one is driving me nuts!

    I looked at some of the Power Teaching websites, but it seems overwhelming, especially starting it now, a month into the semester. What advice to people have for me?
     
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  3. missk83

    missk83 Companion

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    Sep 29, 2008

    I had sort of the same thing in my 3rd grade class. My mentor gave me the website behavioradvisor.com
    A lot of the stuff on there seems really simple, and I thought I was doing a lot of it already (positive reinforcement etc), but using certain words like I and we instead of you made a huge difference in my classroom.
    Its techniques are similar to power teaching.
    Also, the website suggests writing names of students who ARE on task on the board, something else I tried that works really well. They like the recognition.
    I would check it out. Try the techniques suggested, even if they seem over simple and silly.
    Good Luck :)
     
  4. Canadian Gal

    Canadian Gal Habitué

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    Sep 29, 2008

    I would try a signal, like switching off the lights. Or Give me Five.
     
  5. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    Sep 29, 2008

    Power Teaching doesn't have to be overwhelming. Introduce the Big Six, the Class/Yes, and the Scoreboard. Keep score for something they'll really want, like two minutes at the end of the period to talk about movies, music, etc. They won't win at first, of course, but eventually you let them win (when behavior improves.) Peer pressure will kick in when they realize that some of their classmates are keeping them from getting something they want. I have taught seventh grade, and I think the management part of PT would be great for the age group.
     
  6. WindyCityGal606

    WindyCityGal606 Enthusiast

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    Sep 29, 2008

    I agree that it's not too late to try Power Teaching. Time is only going to keep going by then where will that class be? You can't allow them to get any more out of control It's YOUR class and ultimately, YOU are the one who gets to call the shots. Not THEM. Take your classroom back and let them know that this is the way things will be done from now on. Don't over explain. Just start doing it. My best days are the days when I draw a nice thick line between myself and my students. When I get too relaxed, they crawl a little over that line and I quickly have to push them back with my behavior. They really do feed off of us. The firmer and more down to business I am, the more my class gets accomplished and the more under control my room is. I get through my lesson plans and we get our objectives mastered. That's what I'm there to get done. I don't have to be their friend and I don't have to be friendly, just professional. BTW...after all these years, I have managed to be both friendly and still get the job done. It can be done but it takes time, and lots of trial and aerror. You'll do fine.
     
  7. Loomistrout

    Loomistrout Devotee

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    Sep 30, 2008

    From Fred Jones' Positive Classroom Discipline:

    Students continually make judgments about the teacher's competence along the most basic dimension of leadership - proactive vs. reactive.

    Proactive people have a plan and a specific method of implementing that plan.

    Reactive people have a general idea of what they want done. They give general directives, a variety of outcomes result, and they must then react to events as they unfold.

    There is a pattern of speech that is characteristic of reactive management - NAG, NAG, NAG.

    Students understand perfectly well that the biggest single variable that governs the likelihood of their "goofing off" is the physical distance between the teacher and the student.

    The first major rule of classroom structure: Anything that you do not structure to your advantage, someone else will structure to their advantage.

    Crowd Control

    The most basic crowd control procedure known is working the crowd. Teachers who have a minimum of discipline problems are constantly moving among the students whether it be seat work, group discussion or cooperative learning.

    The cheapest form of management is proximity. By moving among the students a teacher can suppress the majority of disruptions while increasing his or her ability to supervise work.
     

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