Great question, but more importantly, great to hear from you! I totally admire your teaching philosophy and style found through the blog last year. You have such a caring, nurturing vibe to you. :)
Classroom management was probably the number one question I received when we had visitors last year. "How do you get them to be so good and on task?" Formally, I would say that I wasn't quite sure, but now I realize that there are three methods that really help.
1) I treat, talk, and respond to students the way I would my son. That includes NOT working on an extrinsic motivating sort of program. I just don't like the whole idea of holding a carrot in front of kids to propel them forward on being good. I call this management based on trust, and I actually did write a post on this last year. It's pretty detailed. It has been turned into an article now and can be accessed here:
2. I do have a smidge case of OCD like tendencies, and that means routines are rather important in our room. I don't go for the whole Harry Wong type of practicing procedures, but we do cement those in and the beginning of the year.
3. I honestly believe our classroom environment plays a major role for the general good vibes in the classroom. Often an office worker will busily walk in and then stop in their tracks and say, "Woah, it's so calming in here." The lighting, the furniture, the photos, and the plants make it FEEL calming, resulting in calmer kids.
With that said, I can honestly say that I have never had behavior concerns...including teaching in an inner-city middle school in Nashville. I think the article link I posted would work for you and your style of teaching. :)
And if you made it this far with my short novel, I'd love to see some photos of Soraya. I am sure she is just gorgeous!!!
Sign up today for free teaching ideas, lesson plans, online activities, tips for your classroom, and much more.
Choose your grade range:
See a sample >