Classroom and Student Management
We can learn a lot from external experiences. Take a retail store’s checkout center, for example. When you go to a self-checkout lane and read “no cash” and a robotic voice asks you, “Do you wish to continue?” You have the option to touch the computer screen to respond “yes” or “no.” If you say “yes,” you may then proceed with checking out; if you say “no,” you simply cancel the transaction and move to a register that transports “cash,” or you leave for home. No fuss.
Equally, when you visit a fine, fast food restaurant, especially its drive-through, to place an order, the server welcomes you and ask “May I take your order?” The server adds to the service by making a recommendation for you to try another item on the menu. You may decline the offer, yet you appreciate the asking.
To complement your visit, the server happily brings your order, everything intact. You say, “Thank you,” and the server responds, “My pleasure.” You leave the restaurant feeling special, and the food you taste is very satisfying. You repeat your patronage to the restaurant because you know you will receive quality service and good food again and again.
Let’s examine one last scenario—a different perspective. You enter a place of business to send a special delivery. Few people are ahead of you: Each person before you seems to have a myriad of things to do, and in the process of each transaction, the customer and worker chat giddily with each other while you patiently—perhaps not so patiently—wait your turn.
Fifteen minutes pass, and you’re next. When you approach the counter, the worker does not greet you, the worker does not apologize for your wait, nor does he (or she) expedite your order, as simple as it is to do so. When your transaction is over, you say—you—not the worker—“Thank you” (natural courtesy), and the worker mumbles “mmmhump” or says nothing at all. You leave the place of business feeling unimportant and dismissed as a human being. You may continue the patronage at the business place because you need its services, but within your memory, if you do visit the store again, you will avoid the person who made you feel unimportant as a customer.
The above scenes can be applied to classroom management and student management. Let’s take a look at them both, starting with classroom management. As you read, focus on the imperatives of what is being stated to be able to answer the questions after each section.
Classroom Management, according to education research, “refers to the wide variety of skills and techniques that teachers use to keep students organized, orderly, focused, attentive, on task, and academically productive during a class.” Thus, the teacher is the person in control of how his or her classroom is managed. Ideally, a classroom setup should be arranged according to the eclectic number of students with an added dimension of excellence, regardless of students’ backgrounds.
As teacher, you must remember scenario number three, where being polite and grateful for students’ help by saying thank-you, is crucial to student management. For example, if you must manage arranging your desks, you will need help. You must depend on your students to assist. If you have 25 to 30 students, you can arrange your desks as wide apart from the other desks as much as possible (Covid-19 caution), and you might need to arrange desks daily, depending on student attendance. Either way, the desks must be managed; and you need help.
The old way of seating students alphabetically may not be feasible when student safety is foremost. If only 20 students are present on a particular day, you could scatter students in their desks to keep them at a safe distance. Or, you could remove the excess desks into the hallway, outside your room door, until the next class, and then regroup.
Because rearranging desks on a class period basis can be exhausting and class time consuming, you will need to teach students how to proceed to help you in an orderly and efficient manner. You will need to expeditiously explain the seating situation and ask students for their help. As soon as the arrangement of desks is in order, you should proceed with a “thank you, class. I appreciate your help very much,” and then proceed with the day’s learning objectives.
An explanation of your special situation and a request for your students’ help and a sincere “thank you” are the only requirements necessary to make students feel needed and appreciated. Students will be glad to help you because you included them in helping to solve a problem, and they saved your having to push and pull those desks on your own. A BIG ‘thank you’ is due to the students for their aiding you.
Question: What are the steps to make students feel needed and appreciated?
Of course, to maintain the basics of classroom management, you will need to strategically place your classroom rules. Some research insists that you include students when developing rules. While this strategy might be appealing to elementary and middle school students, the idea of high school students constructing rules to follow might not be necessary.
High school students, as they are in the concrete stage of reasoning and understanding the rationale of a teacher’s authority, will accept rules presented to them. Thus, to be readily seen by students, place your classroom rules on the exit classroom door, on both sides of walls and on front wall, facing the whiteboard.
Placing rules wherever students may look is a proactive strategy in keeping students on guard. Keeping in line with good student service, take every opportunity to say to students, “Thank you” or “I appreciate your following my classroom rules.” Reminding students of rules and thanking them for their compliance will help you maintain good classroom management. Remember, it’s the simplest, kindest things you can do to motivate positive human behavior.
The last idea to share about classroom management is to set the stage for excellence in the classroom. You must ask students for their best. To motivate students to complete their assignments, before you give instruction, tell them what the assignment is about and why they must try to understand it. You may help students by relating to the “May I take your order” idea: Translation, “May I have your attention, please, while I explain the Course of Study Objective [parts of speech] and tell why you must understand parts of speech and how you may use parts of speech in your speaking and writing to help you advance in your chosen career?”
You must clearly let students know that you expect them to succeed in your class. When you ask students for permission to teach them, they will obey because, believe it or not, students realize they are in school to learn. They also have been taught by family members or by former teachers or by their own internal being as a human to be polite. Under these forces, students will position themselves to listen. Once you have managed to receive students’ attention, say “thank you,” and proceed with the lesson.
In essence, arranging students’ desks for safety and optimal learning, placing classroom rules inside the classroom, asking students for their permission to listen, stating the learning objectives and the importance of the objectives are the starters for effective classroom management. Anything else that you add to your classroom management decor—should be only those designs that will inspire and motivate your students toward excellence. And anytime a student says, “thank you” for any help you have given him or her, like any good server at a quality restaurant would do and say, smile with a similar reply “ My pleasure.”
Question: What are three important steps to manage your classroom?
Classroom Management and Student Management are two separate concepts although both realms require similar techniques when managing learning environments. According to Eutopia.org, “managing a classroom effectively requires awareness, patience, good timing, boundaries, and instinct. There’s nothing easy about shepherding a large group of easily distracted young people with different skills and temperaments along a meaningful learning journey”.
Student management requires a little more finesse and cleverness than managing a classroom. The important idea to remember is that students are human beings. They “feel” events and react accordingly. Regardless, students can be managed with the simplicity of “questions”: (1) May I have your attention, please?” “Will you please review the classroom rules?” “How may I help you?” “Would you like to continue?”
Before teaching an important lesson, you must receive students’ attention. Techniques to garner attention are many but effective ones are to raise your hand in the air and circle the room. When setting your classroom rules, you will need to explain to students the meaning of your raised hand and your circling the room. Tell students, “When you see me pacing the room with my hand in the air, I am politely asking you to give me your attention because I have to explain to you what you are about to learn and why you must learn it.” Next, say, “Thank you in advance for allowing me to teach you.” Then, move straight into your instruction.
Sometimes students will endure instruction until the end, yet there will be a few students whose attention span will wear out. Sometimes a student will begin to break the rules of the class. At first, give the student “the eye” and proceed teaching without saying anything to him or her. If the problem continues, remind the class, not the student only, of classroom rules. “Class, if you are uncertain about my rules while I am teaching, please refer to rule number 4.” Then continue with the lesson. If the problem persists, it is a clear sign of disrespect and the student must be held accountable.
If you have a supportive administrative team, text to ask if someone will come remove the student from your classroom. You must text so that other students will see. This strategy is known as “ripple effect”: Punish one, teach all. A member from administration should arrive quickly as possible to remove the student, otherwise this particular student -management technique will fall flat.
Or, as teacher, firmly insist student leave: “Jane Doe, please step outside my room. I will speak with you shortly.” Usually a student will leave the room. If not, you probably have a belligerent student that you are dealing with and must proceed with caution. Ignore, if feasible. Yet, as soon as you get a chance, speak with the student to determine the reason for his or her disrespect and remember to contact the student’s parents.
The student should not be allowed back into your classroom unless (1) principal or member of the administration team escorts him or her back into your classroom, (2) unless you have spoken with student and he or she agrees to behave, (3) unless you have spoken with the student’s parent—or (4) try this: Ask the student to apologize to you and the class to avoid further penalty. Usually the student will apologize because doing so agrees with his masked good nature.
Of course, you may not leave student isolated for too long, especially if your strategies do not work, for you are always responsible for the student’s safety, yet student should be held away
from class long enough for other students to discern that they too will find trouble if they cause disturbance in the learning environment. Whatever, you do, aim to minimize the situation so not to interrupt instruction for another student’s learning. Unruly students must be dealt with humanely yet quickly and firmly.
Continuing, “How may I help you?” is necessary to ask the class as a whole or to ask a student individually. Asking “How may I help you?” shows that you are concerned with the student’s capacity to learn and that you care about what he or she has to add to instruction. If students, overall, do not respond to questions in class, you should add to the “after” part of your instruction where students may write to express their learning and to ask any questions they may have. Asking “How may I help you?” should be a general question student hear from you on a regular basis.
After asking “How may I help you (further)? Give students time to reflect. Then, ask the last question, “Do you wish to continue?” If students make no comment, assume that they are ready for you to continue instruction and you should then look forward to the questions they may ask of you on their exit slips.
Crisisprevention.com agrees that managing students can be challenging yet easy when you remember the human factor. Be nice to students yet be firm and consistent in executing your student management plan. In essence, a student’s management plan is the teacher’s ability to place students in a learning mode without having to begin a war with the students. The idea is to not fight at all, says Sun Tzu, Art of War.
Moreover, for easy remembrance, crisisprevention.com further extends four fundamental elements that support successful student management tips: these steps complement the message of this post and should be helpful and easy for you to remember:
1.Know what you want and what you don’t want.
2. Show and tell your students what you want.
3. When you get what you want, acknowledge (not praise) it.
4. When you get something else, act quickly and appropriately.
Most experts in the field of human behavior—teachers, psychologists, counselors, ministers, parents will agree that being upfront with students, asking them for compliance, and reminding them of consequences, are effective ways in managing students.
Question: How should you handle a disruptive student.
Classroom Management and Student Management Tips
Every teacher will have his or her own style as to how to manage the classroom and students. Yet, with the unpredictable manner of nature’s possible interruptions and students’ increasing mindset to be defiant at will, teachers need strategies and techniques to proceed teaching effectively in the classroom. Below are five tips for classroom management and five tips for student management:
1. Be a professional in dress, voice, and instruction.
- Arrange classroom according to number and style of students.
- Have lesson plans ready to put into action.
- Display learning objectives in classroom.
- Keep classroom clean, cool, and attractive.
- Learn students’ faces and names right away.
- Be polite yet businesslike when dealing with students.
- Review classroom rules everyday via verbal, board, assignment.
- Generate a discipline and motivational plan.
- Encourage students to excel by recognizing their potential.
Answers to post’s questions:
- What are steps to make students feel needed and appreciated?
Ans: Ask right questions to be able to help students. Treat students humanely.
- What are three steps to manage your classroom?
Ans: Arrange an orderly classroom, Be clear about classroom rules, and teach learning objectives.
- How should you handle disruptive students?
Ans: Ignore the insignificant. Remind students of rules. Speak with student and parent. Involve administration if necessary. Handle problems immediately.
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Doctor of Curriculum and Instruction
Professional Development Presenter
SIX TIPS for Coping with Learning During A Pandemic, by Dr. Cynthia Mathews, Classroom Instructor, Curriculum and Instruction Consultant, Educational Leadership Consultant, and Educational Blogger.
- Be Responsible by Understanding the Significance of a Pandemic.
According to multiple reports of “Pandemic,” it shows a wide spread of a virus or disease. Usually the spread of the virus is around the world. The name Pandemic indicates the degree to which a disease is spreading; it is NOT the disease itself. Throughout human history, a number of pandemics of diseases have transpired–smallpox and tuberculosis and influenza, to identify a few (Research). The latest pandemic scare is COVID-19. As a result of the Pandemic, COVID 19 has emerged, which is unpredictable and has managed to rob cohesion among people at work, within families, among friends, and at businesses. COVID-19 has manifested confusion, sadness, and even hostility among many people: Research reports that some people feel their happiness for living has been robbed through the presence of COVID-19. The significant idea about a Pandemic, however, is that it travels and consumes many enabled places, people, and things. A Pandemic can transport unrest and illnesses all over the world. Yet, being responsible by doing your best to stay safe and to protect others from possible infection if you have contracted COVID-19, it is highly recommended that you follow the guide lines of the Center for Disease Control.
- Practice CDC’s Guidelines.
Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports using hand-sanitizers, wearing a face mask, and keeping a distance of at least 6-feet from others will help prevent the spread of a virus, namely, COVID-19. The virus is believed to negatively affect people 65 years of age or older and any other individual–regardless of age–who is known to be at a health risk, such as a person living with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, or obesity. Other health problems people maintain may also bring about COVID-19. According to CDC’s report, COVID-19 is believed to spread from person to person through droplets of coughs, sneezes, or talks, and the droplets can enter an infected person’s body system, bringing about a potentially fatal fate for the person. The CDC’s guidelines of sanitizing hands, wearing a face mask, and keeping 6 ft apart from others are the most reliable means of controlling the spread of COVID-19.
- Understand the Importance of Silence during Critical Times.
Dictionary.com defines silence as an absent of any unnecessary talk or comment or expressed concern. Silence is a concealment recommended when a crisis or an illness or a natural disturbance is within proximity of persons or events. Silence affords the opportunity for reflection, for you need to weave meaning from the threads of experiences to be able to embrace reasonableness out of misunderstood situations. In school, for example, during a pandemic, silence is especially important. While CDC’s guideline “Maintain 6-feet apart from others,” is a reasonable directive, it may not be so easy to comply for a group of students placed in a restricted setting for an extended period of time. Thus, within a classroom learning time, if you are a teacher, students should be taught the importance of being quiet while undergoing a pandemic and learning simultaneously. Like being quiet during a torrent thunderstorm or during a visitation of a deceased person, silence is a type of respect that is paid to a pandemic’s inevitable eruption of ordinary times. Thus, during the time of a pandemic, where possible, understand that “silence is golden” and honor it.
- Spread Goodwill among One-Another.
Most definitions identify goodwill as a friendly, cheerful, kindness, disposition. Goodwill is helpful during anytime in life, of course, yet most especially helpful during a pandemic, which may bring about fear, anxiety, unhappiness, and confusion. A benevolent act of kindnesses that is spread among everyone can help ease many uncertainties. Extending comforting words, “We are in this together,” helps you feel less isolated and less despaired. Where possible, especially while at school, be kind to classmates and teachers and administrators and counselors and custodians and all other personnel at school. Everybody during a crisis needs kindness. Smile whenever possible to amend for the lack of talking during critical times, and remember, when all efforts fail, just be kind. It’s the only obligation you as a human being owe to other beings while living on this earth.
- Practice a healthy Work-Ethic.
What is work ethic? It’s a practice to strengthen character. In life, the duty of human beings is to work and to work honestly. Humans are born to move about, to create opportunities, to aid the universe, to aid other people, and to aid themselves. To possess a good work ethic, you must practice honing dedication to complete any good endeavor. When work ethic is evident, a sense of loyalty and commitment to a job is readily seen and is an admirable trait. Work is medicine for relinquishing worry, for work consumes time though productiveness, not through anxiety. In a recent article written by Robert Half (2019), he agrees that work ethic allows people to accept a challenge or change or disruption. Therefore, to embrace change, if you are a teacher, when at school, teach students the importance of work ethic and illustrate how it influences their lives for the better. Furthermore, teach students that applying a healthy-work-ethic builds character: turns weakness into strength. During a pandemic, throw yourself into productive work and ease your mind into productiveness. By possessing a strong work ethic, you show that you are smart and that you are someone that others can rely on to get a job done. A good work ethic is important to portray, especially during a pandemic.
- Try not to worry.
When you worry, you usually do not have enough information about the thing that is worrying you. Proverb 4:5-9 states, “Get wisdom, get understanding; forget it not.” Understanding a situation will bring peace to your heart and allow you to move forward with acceptance. Worry brings anxiety and misery, and it does the body and mind no good. Be aware that worrying may bring about health problems, such as stress, and stress can lead to greater problems, which may represent as a host for viruses, seminal research reports. Therefore, the first sign of worry, you should begin a research strategy–ask questions–about what afflicts you. Talk with professionals on the topic of your concern. Only knowledge will help delete your worrying. Seek it. You will then be able to deal with facts. You will heal yourself. You will be able to move forward. Try not to worry about things outside your control. The pandemic is one such thing that is outside your control for it is too BIG and is WIDELY spread nearly all over the world.
TRY THESES EXTRA TIPS for STUDENT LEARNING:
- Place Pandemic Reminder Posters around the room. (This idea will help keep students within understanding of the Pandemic and will help promote their proper behavior while learning.)
- Keep students busy with meaningful assignments to help deter unnecessary talk. (Relate a problem-solving assignment with learning objectives.)
- Play popular music to help keep students entertained. (Examine lyrics for appropriateness.)
- Allow 10-minute of instructional time [each day] for a select number of students to develop a peer-relationship with one another while they maintain 6-feet apart. (This idea will help decrease the apathy that being separated from their peers may bring.)
- Give a piece of candy–Peppermint, Jolly Rancher, or Dark Chocolate. (Ask student-permission) to keep their mouths satisfied and moving (This idea will help prolong endurance to finish their assignments.)
- Return classwork with passing grades and positive comments on students’ papers (This idea of positiveness will help keep students motivated to learn).
- Keep yourself aware to remain within distance of students while instructing yet remain within safe proximity for student learning. (You can do it; just plan accordingly.)
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