Although most teachers have not been teaching the traditional way, most cities and states are planning to return to in-school schooling (in some form) in the fall. I am hearing from so many teachers with questions about what they should expect when they return to the classroom. I wish I had all of the answers, but one thing that I do know is that when students return to school after being out of school for 5-6 months, the number one thing that they are going to need is structure. Teachers are asking:
- What does that structure look like?
- Shouldn’t I just be there to support them and not place any demands?
- They have been through a lot, I just want to be there for them.
My answer to all of that is yes…. And the way that you support and be there for them is to have a classroom management system that provides clear expectations, procedures, and rules all wrapped up with a strong ribbon of reinforcement! The way that kids feel safe is by their environment being predictable and positive. (One of the reasons the school closures were so hard on kids was the unpredictability of it!)
Classroom Management for Tough Behavior
I know that setting up your classroom management system can be overwhelming (especially if you are a brand new teacher!). That is why I’m going to give you two simple steps to get the ball rolling! I’ve even put together a printable worksheet for your use! Grab it HERE.
Step 1: Determine What Behavior You Want to Stop
Take a breath, close your eyes, and think of that one behavior that’s making your day difficult?
- Is it when students call out without raising their hand?
- Is it when students are out of their seat when you are trying to teach?
- Or, maybe it’s that whenever you give an instruction it takes them too long to comply?
Whatever that behavior makes your day difficult, be as specific as you can! (there is no right or wrong answer)
For example, instead of saying, “When they have a question they are rude”, say “When they have a question they call out, bang on their desk and get out of their seats.”
The more specific the better!
Step 2: Determine What Behavior You Want to See Instead
Once you know the behavior you DON’T want to see, it’s time to determine what you want them to do instead. This step is often skipped but is actually where the magic happens! When we get a child to stop one behavior without giving them the behavior we want instead, we open it up for them to fill in that space (and trust me, what they fill it with is often worse!)
Again, you’ll want to be as specific as possible. Instead of: “I want them to ask questions appropriately”, what you actually may want instead is when they have a question they:
- Raise their hand
- Keep their mouth quiet
- Stay in their seat
See how much more clear that is?
Dealing with Tough Behaviors
That’s it…. That’s all you need to figure out first! So, before you get discouraged just know that even if you don’t do anything other than those two things, I promise you’ll start to see your classroom management system come together!
If this is just what you are looking for and want more, get on the waiting list of my new course……
Coming up next week: I’ll walk you through what to do once you know which behavior you want to change and what you want to change it to!