I am very curious about this.

Discussion in 'General Education' started by showmelady, Nov 19, 2011.

  1. showmelady

    showmelady Companion

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    Nov 19, 2011

    Does anyone work in a school where, when the students come into the classroom, they sit down quietly at their desks, work quietly on their lessons? I recently started subbing, and am astonished that the students seem to be allowed to just carry on conversations and that they do not seem to have much training on how to behave in the classroom.

    Is this nationwide?
     
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  3. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    I don't think geography matters as much as expectations.
     
  4. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    My kids enter silently and work immediately on a Do Now. The first ten minutes and last ten minutes of the day are always silent. I can't say it is always silent in between, but the noise is mostly due to collaborative learning. (I hope!)
     
  5. Ron6103

    Ron6103 Habitué

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    Nov 19, 2011

    It's a matter of expectations indeed. My kids have a "warm-up" on the screen before I even enter the room. the vast majority of them have already started to work on it when I walk in. They may still be talking while I'm out in the hallway and such, but as soon as I walk in, they're quiet and working.

    That said, other teachers don't except that, and thus it doesn't happen.
     
  6. Reality Check

    Reality Check Habitué

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    Nov 19, 2011

    Don't let anyone kid you, it's not your or any teacher's fault they behave that way.

    You can have all the "expectations" you want, but high school students (and their parents) specifically in our urban and immediate surrounding areas see the school as a social center, not a place of education. There's no reason to think that it's unique to one place.... I'm sure it's the same in other parts of the country as well.


    :huh:
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    Nov 19, 2011

    My students have "welcome work" that they work on when they arrive. They always have a materials list that tells them what to get for the day, too. They have four minutes between classes, and within a minute of the tardy bell, they are in their seats working on their welcome work. Once they get that done, they read their library books.

    They need some reminders from time to time, but for the most part, they just do it because that's the way it is in my room.

    If you're subbing, then you are likely seeing students who are NOT behaving like they would for their teacher. They love to "test the waters" with the new person just to see what they can get by with.
     
  8. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    I like that, welcome work. Has a nice ring to it. I hate the term "bellringer".
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 19, 2011

    You've got it right. :thumb:

    Reality Check, your post once again shows your frustration with your career. It's sad. What do you do to not let your frustrations affect your expectations of and interactions with your students?
     
  10. yarnwoman

    yarnwoman Cohort

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    Nov 19, 2011

    I work at a K-12 school and our students shake our hands before entering a classroom, when we return to the classroom as a class (from recess or lunch for example) students stand behond their desks quietly until instructed to sit and they stand and greet vivistors as a class when an adult enters the room.

    When my students enter in the morning they shake my hand, enter the classroom unpack their backpacks, gather pencils and begin working on their morning work.

    It is part of the culture of my school. It is so neat to enter a highschool classroom and have the entire class stand to greet me.
     
  11. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    Nov 19, 2011

    We have 90 minute blocks. I choose to let my students come in and relax for a few minutes before starting their work. If I need them to start immediately, I project a big sign like "timed write - start now" on the screen. My relaxed start-up procedures are intentional. My students have a very rigorous inclusion schedule with long class blocks. My classes are their only special-ed pull-outs. I like giving them a few minutes to decompress. I also use the time to have conversations with them about their life and their other classes. I think the key is not getting immediate silence, it's having an effective routine.
     
  12. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    My students have about 30 minutes of morning work everyday. It is usually just review work or incomplete assignments. During this time, those that need it eat their breakfast, they go to the bathroom, etc... I spend a few minutes with each student discussing their evening/morning. Twice a week we do calendar as a group, otherwise I choose a student to do it with me.
     
  13. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I no longer have work on the board when students enter...the change was made for various reasons. Students still enter quietly and enter information into their agendas. When I am ready to begin the lesson (meaning when all the students are in the room), I do my "focus" routine and we are ready to go. :)
     
  14. webmistress

    webmistress Devotee

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    Nov 19, 2011

    :agreed:
     
  15. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    My students come in and can talk until the tardy bell rings, but after that they are working on their journal. There's sometimes a low hum of chit chat during that time, particularly in two of my classes. As long as they are also working, I'm okay with that.
     
  16. queenie

    queenie Groupie

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    My kids enter quietly, move their lunch cards, turn in their folders, get out their journals and begin morning work. Every day. While I'm in the hall monitoring. Really. I have a child as monitor and s/he writes down the number of any child who is talking/disrupting on the board so I'll see it when I come in. There's a number on the board about once a week, if that. I have to say, though, that this class is the best one I've had! I always have these expectations, but last year, for instance, I had to keep checking because one boy was always up out of his seat goofing off or bothering other kids. So, YES, kids can be expected to know how to act, but SOME kids won't do it- no matter what!
     
  17. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    Mine come in talking - they've been sitting and working for 90 minutes. That's a long time for 7th graders! Once the bell rings, I tell them to start their warm-up and they settle right down. It is about the expectation... and little bit that "teacher look."
     
  18. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Nov 20, 2011

    I teach English right after lunch recess, so the students are coming in from outside, going to their lockers, coming in to the classroom and getting the materials they need for the period out of their desks. There is usually talking as they enter, but once I'm at the front with the attendance folder in my hand, they are quiet.
     
  19. SpecSub

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    Nov 20, 2011

    I love how they stand and greet visitors!! What a way to show respect. However, as I sit here coughing and wheezing, I know why I don't want to shake my students' hands. :lol:
     
  20. 2ndTimeAround

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    Nov 20, 2011

    Some of my students this semester do as is expected. Most of them have to be reminded to do their bellwork once I walk in from hall duty. Sadly, some of these students see no benefit to getting an education - school is a place to eat two meals a day, to score a drug deal, to play a sport, to get out of an abusive/neglectful home. Some have parents who flat out tell their kids they do not have to show any respect to "white" teacher. @@

    But the majority of my students year after year? Yeah, they walk in and get started on their work.

    When I worked in elementary school, most kids did that too.
     
  21. yarnwoman

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    I admit that when I am sick, I will just greet them at the door. IF they are sick and I know it I will let them enter without shaking hands.

    The culture of our school is based on the virtues and respect. It always makes me smile when the students greet people.
     
  22. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    My seniors are usually chatting until the bell rings, but when I announce "class" and they answer "yes," we get down to business.
     
  23. showmelady

    showmelady Companion

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    Apr 14, 2012

    In the classes I have subbed for the procedures are pretty much as you all have described. (kids come in, work on assignments on the computers or the overheads, or write in their journals or read some material)

    Now I have another question.

    As I said, I only recently began to sub and from what I see so far most of the information is given to the students via the computer (various learning sites), data in some video, items they write in their journals, independant research they are required to do, copied mateial that is passed out to the students. I do not see many students actually opening a text. In fact, some classes do not even seem to have texts!

    When is the actual TEACHING taking place (by this I mean, when does the teacher actually teach the kids). When I sub and carry on discussions of the material the kids seem totally unused to having someone just stand up and give them information, or explain what they have seen or read.

    This seems very strange to me. And, when I sub and have a prep period I sometimes pass other classrooms when going to the office or lunch, and I do not see teachers in those classes actually talking to the students either. Does this sound like standard practice?
     
  24. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    No, it is not normal to never witness actual direct instruction. That said, I do not usually leave sub plans which require direct teaching. It would simply be a poor idea in my school given the circumstances. Additionally, I would want to "pass by" many classroom many times before determining there is no teaching taking place.
     
  25. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Apr 14, 2012

    I think it's all about expectations. As a regular teacher, the routine can be easily set up:
    - routine: have specific things in place. at my school we have to pass out folders and pencils. I have specific students with those jobs, and although sometimes I still have to remind them, they know that's the first thing they have to do. Doing the same thing every day in the first 5-10 minutes (whatever they are) makes it easy for the students to follow.
    - warm up. If they have something to do, they will get to it quickly and not carry on discussions. Of course if you allow them to talk, be off-task, etc, then the warm up won't do much good.
    - silent reading. This is going to be specific to English classes, but it works wonders. I just started it 1 month ago, and it's beautiful. I put classical music on for my guys, and they don't even complain now :) I have 17-18 year old tattooed up guys in their jail-uniforms, and are sitting there quietly reading, to the sound of Brahms. There is just something strange and beautiful about that lol. During this time I hear loud noises coming through the next classroom, as the students take 10 minutes or forever to settle down.
    - copying objectives / agendas from the board into planner. When I was student teaching in middle school, a lot of 8th grade (and probably others) had the students come in quietly, copy the agenda + homework assignment into their planner, all this as soon as they came in, even though the bell hadn't rang yet. then they moved on to the warm up.

    As a sub, you obviously can't come up with these things, even if you did create warm ups, a lot of times students could resist because it's not their routine.
    When I was subbing, I always did the following, and it worked 99 % of the time.
    - Before the students came in, I lined them up outside to talk to them. Sometimes I had to wait a minute or so for them to be quiet, and I didn't mind if we were still outside after the bell rang. By that time everyone else were in their classrooms, there was no distraction, and my students were quiet. The P or AP always roamed the hallways, so a lot of time they saw me doing this, and I always saw the look or approval on their faces.
    - I let them know my expectations about entering the classroom, which were few. Told them to take off their hoods, no phone, no gum, they had to go directly to their seat, put their backpacks on the floor under/next to their seat and take out their supplies.
    - then we went in, I stood in the doorway so I could monitor inside and outside. If someone started talking, I sent them outside again. Only had to do this with 1 or 2 kids, and this showed them I really meant business.
    - once inside, I introduced myself, let them know my expectations regarding the entire class time, etc.

    - I do not like shaking hands! First of all I do not know where their hands have been. But most importantly this takes way to long. When I was student teaching, one of my classes were newcomers. (ELL). Very loud, very rough, very hard to control, all teachers had a hard time with them. I never understood why the teachers kept up the practice to stay in the door way, shake their hands, ask them how they were doing (each kid separately), and then let them in. They did this with 32 -35 kids.

    Once the kids were inside, they often started talking, yelling, acting silly. The teacher was dealing with greeting the kids, and to intervene, she had to stop and deal with the ones inside. Once inside, the kids outside started to be bored, and just couldn't stay silent all this time. This took forever.
    In my opinion, yes, stand in the doorway, greet them, but shaking hands is just slowing everything down.
     
  26. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Some schools are very anti-direct instruction. A school where I worked had this mentality but not all teachers followed through on it. You would see the majority of teachers sitting away from the students while the students worked independently or in groups. It was often criticized when teachers would roam around the classroom and give feedback on students' work. The prevailing thought was that everything should be inquiry-based and the students would realize soon enough that they were going down the wrong path. It was then up to them to go to their peers to see where they went wrong. Worst case scenario - they sought out the teacher for help. @@ This came from an instructional coach who never answered me when I asked how long she taught herself and for which grades.
     
  27. Math

    Math Cohort

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    I agree with this post because I'm experiencing a class where expectations are high in the college prep course. However the behavior is out of control even the Assistant Principals that "tried" to help really did not improve anything. This is the worst class I have attended.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2012
  28. orangetea

    orangetea Connoisseur

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    Apr 14, 2012

    My students talk quietly until the bell, which I'm fine with. They also talk quietly while I check homework. I don't give them a bellwork problem or anything.

    After I announce that class has started, they are expected to be quiet.
     
  29. platypusok

    platypusok Companion

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    Apr 15, 2012

    My kids chat until the second bell. 5 out of 6 of the classes get to work when the bell rings with no problem. That 6th class is killing me though.

    I was testing one day last week and was not in class. I reminded the P and test admin four or five times that I would need someone to cover one of my classes...just one hour.

    It was a freshmen class and they didn't have anyone in class supervising that hour because the P forgot. Half the kids had been gone the previous day to an activity. Those kids got their work out of the absent folder and did it and everybody did the assignment on the board.

    I also don't leave any work that requires direct instruction for subs because I never know who the sub is going to be.
     
  30. showmelady

    showmelady Companion

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    Apr 30, 2012

    Your response is extremely interesting. I guess anti-direct instruction is what I am seeing. I still do not get that. How can it be called INSTRUCTION if it is not DIRECT. No wonder my kids act surprised if I answer questions or offer ideas or solutions to whatever they are working on!

    I do get lesson plans when I sub, and as near as I can tell the lessons the regular teacher expects me to have the students complete are regular tasks, not just something to 'fill in' when the sub is there.

    I really like a direct approach much better. You never know what will come out in class if you interact!

    Last Friday I did a second grade class. Once we had completed all the tasks left by the regular teacher, (and with only about five minutes left before going home) I just told the kids I would take questions and answer them if I could. One of the boys raised his hand and asked me if he were paralyzed from head to toe, could he move his eyeballs! I was just stunned at such an interesting question from a second-grader! I asked who had a computer at home, and every hand went up. So, since I did NOT know the answer I told the kids to look it up on their computer. I looked it up and am astonished to learn that in some cases of paralysis the eyeballs can move, and in some they cannot! Who would have thought a second-grader could even imagine such a situation.

    And that is not the first time I have been astonished by what students ask, if given the chance. Almost every time I sub I have such an experience, and it is very interesting. And I have done every class from kindergarten to seniors in high school, also very challenged children, kids who are in need of a lot of individual help, and kids on the fringes of the normal class (like pregnant teens, young men who have actually left school and realized they needed more education and have come BACK to school!)

    I really feel that an anti-direct approach is not the best way to go, and not only for the students. Maybe teachers would also benefit from interacting more with their kids.
     
  31. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Apr 30, 2012

    When I taught fifth and kinder, there would be some chit chatting as they came in, put their homework away, put their backpacks away, got their things out, etc. But, they would all settle down and get to work. I like to talk to them, greet them, tell them nice things about how they look today, ask how their game went, etc. This would take all of 5 minutes. And then we would get to work. :)
     
  32. TeachOn

    TeachOn Habitué

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    May 1, 2012

    We don't have bells, though we do of course have a schedule of periods. The student's walk in and sit down. I talk; they talk; we talk. I smile. They smile. Within a minute or two of the appropriate time, I say,"OK kids, let's do something," and we start. Sometimes I use those exact words, sometimes other similar ones. Those few students who can't help but finish a conversation or whatever get a look, an extended palm, a "Hey," and off we go. It's perfectly natural for people of whatever age to chat a bit before getting down to work. I've never been to a meeting of adults where that didn't happen.
     
  33. showmelady

    showmelady Companion

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    Sep 11, 2012

    Where I sub each teacher usually leaves a very detailed lesson plan. It is important to follow the plan closely. I have been told that it is not acceptable to leave out any of the instruction blocks, particularly reading and math.

    I try to encourage the student to work on any hand-outs about the prior days work:confused: or journal entries in the first part of the block, and then I always try to go over the work with them. In talking with some teachers I do not think some actually go over the work. So, exactly how do they expect their students to know when they have an incorrect answer, or have not grasped the concept?

    I know how important it is for the students to perform well on standardized tests. So, I am not really seeing how this 'self teaching' method helps the students grasp the material, in order to perform better on tests.

    In fact, on one lesson plan the students were to answer some questions on a hand-out, and THEN read the material. That was very strange to me, because I would expect it to be the opposite, read the material FIRST, answer the questions, and then some going over the material to make corrections and reinforce the learning process. But when I asked another of the regular teachers, she told me that reading the material after working on the questions was the correct order.

    Does this sound right to you all?
     
  34. McParadigm

    McParadigm Companion

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    Sep 11, 2012

    My expectation was always that students should begin following procedure when they walk into the classroom. Not ready to focus? Don't come in.

    But then I always had my student help desk kids handing out materials and providing guidance to whomever was in the room well before the bell rang. So it wasn't so much about the expectation as it was the physical procedure...if procedures are well designed and implemented, the need for behavioral expectations plummets drastically.
     
  35. Cicero

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    Sep 11, 2012

    It really varies between my classes. The procedure is that they come in, pick up any paperwork that might be waiting for them in their grade level tray, and sit down to start working on their "Do Now" assignment. During this time, unless the assignment allows them to confer with their partners, they are supposed to be silent. I have classes that do this perfectly, and I have other classes that only do it after I have pointed out that they need to be silent.
     

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