"That" class...

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by Cobalt_Waves, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. Cobalt_Waves

    Cobalt_Waves Rookie

    Nov 14, 2012
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    Sep 13, 2013

    Feel more like a prison guard than a teacher for one of my classes

    I have six wonderful classes. The students listen and respond well to my classroom mangement system (yellow card-warning,orange card-detention, red card-call home). They are respectful, hardworking and enthousiastic. They are even having fun learning. I love when I hear them say, while leaving, "That class went by fast!" Even my homeroom, where the kids are a little "rough around the edges" is catching on that I am serious about enforcing behavioural expectations and that resistance is futile (lol). But my 7th class.... oh.my.goodness.

    I have several students in that class who are fresh out of juvenile detention, or who are almost on their way there. One kid had already received a fine from the police today. In fact, the form for the fine was the only thing he brought with him to class today. No pencil. No paper. Many of them are disrespectful and most certainly unfocused.

    So today I made some phone calls home, and will be notifying the admin.

    But. What am I to do for the rest of the year if parental and administrative interventions have no effect on disruptive students? I cannot really send kids to the office during this period because both the P and AP are teaching. (So...one good thing is that I will never be observed during this period... i guess...).

    Anyone have a similar situation?

    On the bright side, I am beyond lucky that 6 out of 7 of my classes are awesome.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2013
  3. Ms.History

    Ms.History Rookie

    Aug 27, 2010
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    Sep 30, 2013

    Oh my gosh, you just completely described my "THAT" class! I have maintained my sanity this week by scrapping my regular rules/consequences and giving them this:

    1. Warning (And I say, "Billy, this is your warning.")
    2. Lunch detention. (With me, in my room - we're not allowed to assign them Admin. lunch D).
    3. After school detention. (With me, child calls home to explain why.)

    I have a clipboard and write down names of warning/det. assigned each day. (Another way to CYA and keep a record of behavior).

    It's better, but still my roughest class... and it stinks to practically have no lunch break. Definitely open to any better solutions!

    ALSO: I remind them of the 3 step consequences every single day before we start class.
  4. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

    Sep 7, 2010
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    Jun 3, 2014

    I am searching through old threads for ideas for behavior management for next year and am wondering how it ended up going with these classes? I struggled with two of my classes (one especially) all year and am hoping to go in with a strong plan for next year, although my teaching assignment will be different. Did anyone find any particular strategies that worked for their toughest classes?
  5. HSEnglishteach

    HSEnglishteach Rookie

    Mar 26, 2012
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    Jun 4, 2014

    Getting Real

    The classroom management piece is hard to crack, especially for newer teachers. That's because there are no magic bullets: there is no single, discrete thing you can do as a teacher to instantly make yourself an effective classroom manager. Your ability to manage a classroom, in my opinion, comes from a combination of your use physical and voice presence in the room, your use of curriculum to build engagement, your use of student relationships to establish rapport, etc. There's one piece of the classroom management puzzle that I didn't understand until my third or even fourth year in a classroom, though, and that's that true authority is mental.

    One educational thinker -- I think his name is Rick Smith -- talks about something he calls "inner authority," and I think he really gets it right. All of those other classroom management elements are essential, but you won't really feel like you have full control over a classroom until you internally feel like the leader of the room, until you feel like the boss. I know my first or second year of teaching, my inner monologue sounded something like this:

    "Oh no, I hope something bad doesn't happen!"

    Now, my inner monologue sounds like this:

    "Something bad better not happen here, or somebody is going to pay the price!"

    It's amazing how something so subtle, so internal, can paint such different pictures of your world as a teacher.

    As a teacher, I control my environment. I have the power, not the students. Now that doesn't mean I'm a dictator or even strict, by the traditional sense; I'm probably one of the most enthusiastic and happy-go-lucky teachers in my building. I'm always smiling; my students never see me yell. But inside, I know that if the you know what hits the fan in my classroom, if that line is crossed, I will take swift action, and my students know it, too. It makes a big difference.

    It's essential, too, to let offenders know very early on in the year two all-important things: that you care about them, and that you won't take crap from them. In that first week, I may pull one or two or three kids aside in that first week (always in private!) and "get real" with them. In those situations, especially with boys, I stand a little closer to the student than they're perhaps used to from a teacher and make unwavering eye contact. In those situations, my conversation is short and one-sided and goes something like this:

    "That's not going to fly in my classroom. Do you understand me? Not in this room, not ever."

    I then make it a point to single that student out in the next day if possible for something good.
  6. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Jun 2, 2013
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    Jun 8, 2014

    It sounds like you're punishing yourself too along with them!:p
  7. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Jun 10, 2007
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    Jun 8, 2014

    Does that colored card system work for you, OP? I've never heard of anyone using that in secondary.
  8. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

    Sep 28, 2004
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    Jun 8, 2014

    There will always be "those" people, and it's better to have them together than ruin the good kids' education by putting a few in each good class. I know that's an unpopular attitude, but it's the truth. It's high time the majority of time, attention, and money was spent on good kids than on the lowest common denominator.
  9. Strick

    Strick Rookie

    Apr 15, 2013
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    Jun 10, 2014

    I love the idea of making them call home with you! Definitely using that idea next year!

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