Keeping a classroom running smoothly is a day-to-day task for teachers. The purpose of this list is to provide teachers with classroom management strategies that they can begin to implement right away. Use this in conjunction with the top tips for successful classroom discipline
to help create an effective and enjoyable learning environment in your class.
1. Write With Large Letters on the BoardWhile this might seem simplistic, the fact is that some students will have trouble seeing the board if you write in small letters or if you don't write dark enough. Don't give students any more excuse than normal for not participating. Something you can try is to write something on the board in your normal method, then go to the back of the room and see if you can read it. If you have trouble, some of your students will be having trouble too.
2. Speak LoudlyI once had a very sweet teacher who reverted every day to almost a whisper. This is not an ideal situation in that students will either lose focus quickly since they can't hear their teacher very clearly or they will start disrupting class. However, this does not mean you should shout. In fact, screamers are just as bad as whisperers in losing kids' attention.
3. Learn Names and Use ThemObviously, the sooner you learn names in the school year, the better. However, even after the beginning of school has long passed, you should still call students by their name. This keeps them focused and involved.
4. Write Your Agenda on the Board
Even if you just write headings, providing the students with information about what is going to be covered in class by writing an agenda on the board
can help keep them focused. With this said, it is not a good idea to write the homework assignment
on the board, as some students will be tempted to begin it instead of participating in the lesson.
5. Don't Race Through Lessons
Sometimes teachers have so much information to cover that they just race through lessons each day. However, this can be a mistake as it doesn't allow students of varying abilities the chance to keep up with the information being taught. It is important to ask questions
while you are teaching to gauge students understanding. With this information, you can then choose to continue on or to slow down and cover material in greater depth. However, if you just speed through your lessons, you won't have this as an option.
6. Require Students to Raise Their Hands
Having students raise their hands is a very important classroom management
skill. This requirement allows you to have the ability to call on different students instead of just allowing the same few to always call out answers in the classroom. Further, it allows you to provide wait time
to let students have the chance to think about your question, giving more students the opportunity to be involved.
7. Give Students Enough Time to Raise Their HandsAs mentioned previously, wait time is a very important concept. Obviously, if you are not having students raise their hands then you really can't use wait time. However, if you have students raise their hands, do not call on the first child that throws their hand in the air. Instead, wait five to seven seconds before calling on anyone. This will allow students to have the time to listen to, think about, and formulate an answer to any question you pose.
8. Ask Obvious Questions
You should ask questions to the class at all levels of Bloom's Taxonomy
. However, some teachers fail to ask very simple questions, seeing them as obvious and unnecessary. However, they can serve a couple of purposes. First, they can get more students involved in answering questions since their answers are obvious. Second, they can provide you with quick feedback on what the students are learning. If what you think is obvious isn't so easy for the students, you need to relook at what you are teaching.
9. Handle Wrong Answers Positively
This doesn't mean that you ignore wrong answers. Instead, when a student attempts to answer a question and they get it wrong, try and point out something positive or turn their answer into a learning opportunity. For example, if you ask how many years a president can serve for and they say eight years, you could say something like, "Well, that's close. Two terms is the limit which would be eight years. However, the twenty-second amendment
to the Constitution takes into account if a vice president was made president through presidential succession. Anyone else have an answer?"
10. Don't Take Misbehavior Personally
In most cases, student misbehavior
should not be taken as a personal affront. This can be hard when you've worked on what you consider to be an excellent and engaging lesson plan and the students just won't listen. Just realize that students will talk and misbehave. The best plan is to learn how to redirect misbehavior while not taking it to heart.