As a substitute teacher, I get to see a lot of classrooms. Some classrooms are better than others but I am still getting a general idea that classroom management is lacking for a majority of teachers. At first, I just established it to certain teachers or the fact that I am a young, new sub. But I think as a whole, students are getting away with everything. Students know that their teacher really cannot do anything so they choose to do horrible things and are disrespectful and do not do their work. I am going to talk about some classroom management ideas I have experienced or implemented.
I have seen several classrooms that use the clothespin chart. I really do not like it. Every student has a clothespin that starts in the middle of a chart. If the student does something good, their clothespin moves up the chart. If the student has bad behavior, the clothespin is moved down a level. There is supposed to be a consequence at each level but I doubt the teacher sends the child to the principal every time they reach that level or calls home. The students know that and figure that they can continue their bad behavior.
Taking away recess is common for a lot of classrooms. Some classrooms take away recess from the whole class and others take it away on an individual basis. I prefer the individual basis. One time, I was in a classroom where the teacher took away five minutes of recess from the entire class and then kept adding minutes. She did this every day and it was obvious that it didn’t work. I almost wished she would do something else.
One thing I did during my student teaching was re-teaches. Students that were misbehaving were given invitations to stay in at recess to practice the correct behavior. It only took a few minutes but they hated it because they were old enough to know how to raise their hand or walk in the hall. I didn’t have to issue very many invitations.
Another thing I have done before is play Student vs. Teacher. Whenever a student does something good, the students get a point. If someone does something inappropriate, the teacher gets a point. This worked for a short time in a classroom I was in. But in another classroom, the teachers were told to always make sure the students won. There was also no incentive for winning so it really didn’t do anything.
There is a serious issue with a lot of students today. They do not behave, do not do their work, or are very disrespectful. Every classroom management plan is unique and won’t work for all students but every teacher needs to find one that works for them and their classroom.