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Classroom Management

The Inclusional Classroom

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The most important element in classroom management is to have a plan. Answer the following questions to see if you are 'ready for anything'.

1. What do students do when they come into your classroom in the morning? After recess and lunch?
2. What is the consequence for not completing assigned work both in class and out?
3. What is the consequence for student(s)interrupting the class or a small group?
4. How do your students request to leave the room for a drink or to visit the washroom?
5. What is the process for the whole class leaving for lunch or recess or to go to the gym?
6. What is the consequence for the child who forgets things?
7. After giving a set of instructions or directions, what is in place for the student(s) that still don't understand?
8. How do you respond to the child that keeps leaving his/her seat?
9. How will your students know about acceptable voices/noise levels to use for the various activities?

These are just a few questions that come to mind, with a good plan in place, you'll be able to answer each question quickly with an appropriate response that works.

If you're uncertain about how you'll handle the above questions, it's time for you develop a plan of action. First off, determine what your rules are - these are best done as a whole class activity. When your students are involved in the decision making process that affects them, chances for success occur with their involvement. For instance, when determining the washroom routine, ask your students what the routine should be. In my class, I had a student that used sign language, all the students thought we should form the letter T in sign language and raise their hand showing the 'T'. When the teacher saw the 'T' she/he would give a nod. The child then left. We had a one at a time rule, therefore, there was a picture of a toilet on the blackboard which was turned upside down until the student returned.

Rules and routines need to be taught and referred to regularly, especially early in the year. Here are some useful tips to teach routines and rules.

Golden Rules About Classroom Management

1. Ensure that you have clearly stated rules and procedures with established consequences that are expected and reviewed regularly. All students must know the rules, routines and expectations.

2. Never continue on with instruction when the rules are being broken - pause, delay and ensure that you have your student's attention.

3. Catch your students using appropriate behavior and praise them!

4. Use behavior contracts when necessary and follow up with appropriate incentives.

5. Be sure that your instructional periods are NOT too long, students need to be mobile throughout the day.

6. Provide individual , personal cueing and prompts to certain students as needed. Sometimes just touching a student's shoulder will bring them back to task.

7. POST the important rules - keep it short, no more than 6 and refer to it often. These should be posted after the class has brainstormed them.

Consistent approaches to classroom managment will work, effective classroom management takes time and should be seriously implmented at the beginning of the year. Show your students respect at all times, students who think they're not liked will become your biggest behavior issue. For tips on dealing with specific behaviors (aggression, tattling etc.) try the tips here.

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