I am having a very difficult class. Today was probably the worst day of all. I had kids throwing paper balls, I had to stop teaching several times, and I realized that the kids get very little work done. I was annoyed when the kids started packing up 5 minutes before the bell rang when half of them accomplished very little during class. I know it's not just me because my mentor said that teaching this time of day is always the worst and the English teacher has struggles with the same group. I called 10 parents today about behavior/academics and they were all receptive. All of the mothers said that they would talk to their kids. I'm wondering how to handle tomorrow. I want to review expectations but also enforce consequences. This class starts talking ANYTIME. I will make an off hand comment and they will start talking about it; I ask them to open up their agendas and they will start talking. Everyone tells me I need to be more strict. I gave one detention for a kid for repeatedly not following directions last week. The kid also forgot to turn in his quiz (and lost it) so he has to take it after school to take it. I'm wondering if I should make him stay for a detention AND take the quiz (two separate days.) The kid was crying after class about his detention...sigh. My issue is that I didn't do a great job establishing routines. They will start the Do Now, but not right away. My goal is to have them all be working when the bell rings. Right now, I have 50% working when the bell rings and I use positive reinforcement (school $$) for this. My other two classes are going well but I'm not sure what it is about this particular group. I am really hoping that calling parents will help with behavior tomorrow. My new "behavior plan" is one warning and then an after school detention. It's just difficult when it seems like the behavior is ALL of the kids and they are all off topic and chatty. I can't walk up to 15 kids individually and ask them to start their work! It's funny because I watched their science class for a few minutes today while their science teacher was fixing the copier for me. They were like "Hi Ms. XXX!!!" It's like they forgot everything that happened in class...LOL. I'm not getting too stressed about it but I am trying to figure out how to make it through the year with this group of kids...and have them actually learn something.