Discussion in 'Behavior Management' started by Pi-R-Squared, Mar 8, 2014.
Mar 10, 2014
Sounds like a true supporter.
So what are your next steps when it comes to classroom management and discipline?
Would be nice if he had someone in mind as a mentor or something.
I mean we can all read books but to see things in place that work would be helpful.
Yes, I think a mentor would be nice.
Honestly, if this is your first referral, it's no surprise that it was rocky. I mean, they don't usually go this bad, but if you're not used to writing kids up, it almost makes sense.
Also, a lot of people are telling you that these kids have lost all respect for you and they're now planning more ways to get in trouble. That may be true, but it may not be true at all. It all depends on the kids.
You can tell one kid to be quiet and he'll hate you for the rest of his life for picking on him.
You can give a kid in the next row detention, and it's forgotten in the span of a car ride home, and he doesn't hold a grudge at all.
If this class is generally good, this might just be a short speed bump that won't ruin the dynamic.
Mar 11, 2014
For one thing, I will be severely limiting group/partner work for the remainder of the year and just have them to more independent work at their seats.... Yesterday was a particularly effective day as I assigned problems to do from the book. I can really notice the ones who do not understand the problems. When they're in groups, they can "look like" they're working but they're really talking and pretending to work. But, when isolated, I can spot the struggling students better.
Overall, it was a very quiet day for all my periods. Granted, the two trouble makers in 5th period were BOTH out.. One was in ISS and the other I had no idea..... The guilty student from Friday WAS NOT sent to ISS. The last two I've sent to the office were sent back with no ISS so that's a sign for me to put on my big boy pants and get my classrooms in order...
Mar 15, 2014
I think this is a good idea. My Admin has always preached that group work is only for those teachers that have strong classroom management. If not, group work can ascend into chaos. Independent work is the best route in these cases.
Mar 16, 2014
Also, I will be preparing future lessons that I have lots of words in by makin PowerPoint presentations and showing them with the smartboard. Why I haven't done this earlier was part stubbornness and part because I do enjoy writing on the board. Problems occur when my back is completely turned away from the class and I am writing stuff that really could go on technology. I'm also going to purchase a remote "clicker" so I don't have to be near the smartboard to advance my slides. Having pre-written notes will cut down on student misbehavior. That's what I hope will happen.
For middle school kids, mobility around the classroom is key. Just casually walking over to students who are talking will usually silence them simply because they don't want you to know what they were talking about.
And a kid who makes donkey noises with the teacher standing behind him just looks like an idiot.
Powerpoint with a wireless mouse - I couldn't live without it! Everything is on PP, and I even implemented some basic routines, so the kids know what to do.
For example the warm up is always on the board, they take a piece of paper from the tray by the door, and the PP slide tells them what to do.
Then when they take notes, or whatever we do, although some still ask, they all got used to the following:
- always write the title from the slide and whatever is underlined.
- if there is a question, they don't have to write the questions, as long as it's in the answer. So saying "Still, like dust I rise", is this a simile or metaphor, they can't just write simile, they gotta write the example, so they can look at it later.
But if it says: What is a simile? and the answer, the can just write the answer starting with "A simile is ..." This sounds very simple, but I still had to tell them why I need it like this.
Don't buy a fancy powerpoint presenter, they can run $30 and up. I bought a wireless mouse at Walmart for $10, they even have cheaper ones, it works the same way. Actually better, because it's easier to backscroll all the way, while with the presenter it's slower.
I have a docucam, but don't use it as much, because then I'm stuck at my desk. On those days I notice the kids are more chattier. If my desk was behind them, it'd be better, but it's up front to their side, and I can't change it.
And now you've learned that the only time this works is when there is only ONE other child and the two kids are good friends. Otherwise, many middle-schoolers (boys and girls alike) are happy to let someone else take the blame for what they do.
Frankly, I think your "rep" with the student would have improved more if you had done exactly the opposite of what you did - show that you KNOW who the guilty party is, even though you weren't looking directly at him at the time.
As for note-taking, very few middle-schoolers are motivated or disciplined enough to be good at it. I strongly recommend creating PP slides with pre-written notes so the kids know they have to write it. If you give them any choice at all, the vast majority will choose NOT to takes any notes, whatsoever.
As for classroom management, you need to think of a number of consequences YOU can deal out in the classroom with minimal time and disruption - then be consistent with them.
I agree with Cerek about the note taking. I teach high school and my students will not take notes unless they know they have to. At times I'm wondering if I baby them too much by telling them specifically what and when to write (well, like I said, they know it by now based on procedures), but I know they are not independent nor motivated enough to take notes college-style.
I do encourage them to make the notes shorter, so sometimes I deliberately put a lot of things to copy and tell them to put things in their own words or shorten it so they don't have to write that much.
My kids have failed in school, or rather the school system failed them, and with other things happening in their lives their education has been interrupted (in and out of juvie with tons of different teachers), back and forth between schools which often results in worksheets.
I know I am the only teacher at my school who makes them take notes from a powerpoint (or from anything).
It's a battle I've been taking on, but it's worth it.
Anyways, thread-hijack over, taking notes will definitely keep them occupied and quiet, and they do learn from it. Especially if you give them follow up activities where they have to use their notes, or quizzes with the notes, etc.
I do grade their notes for completion.
Mar 17, 2014
I cannot even begin to believe you did that. That could be constituted as a form of bullying. You're the adult, you should know better.
Ugh, what about when they are too excited about we are doing and you just want them to calm down! We were doing snap circuits in groups of 4 Friday, and my boisterous class, core 2, was just too darn loud! Nobody was having side conversations, no one was off-task, just too hyper about snap circuits and having too much fun...
How about giving him a break...he's a new teacher!
Neah..... No breaks deserved! In fact, I would have earned intense tongue lashing by the P but our talk was instead really constructive. Things I learned were as follows:
1.) don't ever turn your back 180 degrees to your students! Most of the riff raff occurs when I don't watch them.
2.) group work won't happen anytime soon in my "regular" classes. I can trust my advanced classes more.
3.) have the crap you need to write (like definitions) in a PowerPoint presentation. It has taken me until March to understand why that just makes sense.
4.) keep them busy from bell-to-bell. It's the one thing that I can do to limit distractions and keep them in their seats!
5.) make decisions FAST! If a student has to relocate to the isolated chair, tell him to go!
Mar 18, 2014
Agree although it's nearly impossible to "don't ever turn your back". If you are aware and understand the leverage which comes with physical proximity 85% of discipline problems can be prevented by just closing the distance between you and students. When Fred Jones observed hundreds of teachers a common attribute among those with the greatest time on task and citizenship freely given was their ability to move. Conversely, teachers who remained stationary - teaching from a lectern, projector etc. - had the highest rates of socializing, out of seat and playing with objects.
Also have high expectations, make them work! (I don't mean any busy work, but work).
Today and tomorrow we're having CAHSEE testing. I'm doing a persuasive writing unit, but instead of having them write 2 essays in 2 weeks, I'm stretching it out for 3 weeks (that's when the quarter ends anyways) and have them write just 1 essay. The rest of the time is spent on persuasive techniques, analyzing commercials and ads, etc, so I'm break up all the work. I had to do it because we had several field trips when 1/3 of the students were gone, so I had to do enrichment activities.
I'm doing the same thing in these 2 days.
It's still work, but less (although they did write over a page of notes), but they're also watching many short video clips (couple of minutes, etc) and tomorrow we're analyzing commercials, and take some more notes.
My point is this: I asked a couple of students what they did in their other classes, and basically my class was the only one where they did something meaningful! In other classes they watched movies, did word searches or sat around and talked (about nothing academic). Interestingly, out of 4 classes I had one class, really just 3 students complaining that they're doing work today. Everyone else knew that that's how I do things.
So the kids know that what we do matters and we don't have time to mess around. (Of course I still have students having problems and struggling, but overall they know that I mean business)
Making them work hard for their grade will make them see that your class is important, they will respect you for it (eventually), even if right now they're hating it.
Yes, you made it an error in judgment. Yes, you learned many things. But the truth is, you are given some wiggle room as a new teacher as you should be.
Mar 19, 2014
My dilemma is what the definition of "busy work" is. Since I teach math, is giving out worksheets that have math problems for practice considered "busy work?" Some people say yes. Others say no. The P dictates, "Don't give them busy work." Look at the following link:
It's almost as if they are telling teachers that making your students practice skills is "busy work."
Apr 1, 2014
Ever since that debacle of a day, I've done NO group work and all work is to be done at their seat independently. So far, I've had quiet classes, kids who can concentrate, and not so much stress! Killing off group work has really improved my ability to keep control of the class. I laugh at myself when I say it took me until late March to figure this out! :lol:
You'll probably want to develop skills that will allow you to offer collaborative opportunities. It can be overdone, but you don't want to limit your students to only independent seat work.
Apr 2, 2014
I allowed one of my classes to help each other. The ones who finished early became my "tutors" and they were placed at stations around the room. Anyone who needed help could ask me or their classmates. I did this only after most of the class was over. That way, there wouldn't be chaos all over the room!
Aug 8, 2017
First of all,
Please bear in mind that this post was from three years ago. The teacher has since moved schools and has grown a great deal as an educator.
Separate names with a comma.