Tips for a Chatty Class

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Jac91, Sep 30, 2016.

  1. Jac91

    Jac91 Rookie

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    Sep 30, 2016

    Any tips for seating arrangement for 21 students that are extremely chatty. We are in an incredibly small classroom so space is really tight. Any help would be great!
     
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  3. shoreline02

    shoreline02 Cohort

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    Sep 30, 2016

    Grade?
     
  4. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Sep 30, 2016

    Rather than a seating arrangement, here is a tip for training a chatty class to be less chatty. I will preface this to say, try to find ways to use their chattiness to your advantage - lots of group work, Turn & Talks, debates, presentations, etc. But when you really need them to be quiet:

    Explain that everyone is going to work quietly for 1 minute. (If you think that is too long, try 30 seconds). Then set the timer for 1 minute. When the timer goes off, praise, praise, praise them. Gradually increase their stamina until they can go a developmentally appropriate amount of time (I always aimed for 15-20 minutes with my first graders.)

    If someone talks before the timer goes off say, "Whoops! We need to try again!" and re-set the timer to start the time over.

    Seating arrangements can work well if there are only a few chatty ones... but they always manage to find someone new to chat with :) Gotta love them!
     
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  5. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Sep 30, 2016

    I keep meaning to work on stamina building (I have 28 kids, and there's a lot of struggle around following directions and sometimes the chattiness/focus/productivity is an issue) - I might have to start this on Monday. Thanks!
     
  6. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    The more constructive talking you can do (partner talk, group projects, etc.) you can do AND WRITING the better. They have energy, you need to channel it into something productive. Don't bother trying to lecture at them for more than 10- 15 minutes at a time. You might as well just talk to the wall.
     
  7. Teach with hope.

    Teach with hope. Rookie

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    I would also start with building their stamina to work independently. Have them work for one minute without talking. Time them and when a minute is up if they are still working quietly let them keep going. Once a student starts talking stop the the time, communicate the length of time to the students and try again for the next independent activity.

    The other thing I think is important to remember is to ask yourself if they are are chatty, but engaged. As teachers, we often associate quiet with students who are engaged and this is often not the case. This is a huge deal for me. I want my kids to be working silently, but that is my own problem and biases of what I "think" learning should look like. However, it is not what learning looks like or even should look like for that matter. I have really had to get over it and it is something that I am still working on. Of course, there are times of the day where they need to be working silently; independent reading, independent skill practice for math, but the majority of the day is spent collaborating and strengthening their understanding of skills by teaching and learning from others.

    Thinking about learning in this way allowed me to let go of some of that need for silent work time. I hope this helps.
     
  8. K-5_teacherguy

    K-5_teacherguy Companion

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    This. It is true in 5th grade, so I have to imagine it would be true in any elementary grade.
     
  9. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    This.
    With the obvious exceptions of testing and direct teaching, there are very few times during the day when my classroom is silent. I expect my students to talk with each other about what they are doing--questioning, clarifying, and expanding their thinking, That said, I do expect the noise level to be reasonable and that conversation is on-topic.
     
  10. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    My big message, that really defines quite a bit of my structure to my classroom: feel free to make a choice, so long as it is for the purpose of helping you do better, and it doesn't hold anyone back from doing their best. The moment it breaks either of those two, the choice is lost. (Moving around the room, using fidgets, stretching if needed, talking during independent work time, etc...)
     

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