Classroom management is a skill that never goes out of style. This technique is used in keeping student-organized, orderly, focused and attentive during an academic task in class, which allows them to be academically productive.
Experienced teachers are effective at managing the classroom while inexperienced teachers find it not easy thus leading to disorder in the classroom. Classroom management is governed by some set of rules and strategies which are followed by teachers, most of which is encompassed by positive behaviors which the teachers show in maintaining an orderly classroom. This positive behavior can be in the form of happy facial expression, encouraging students, greeting student and fair treatment of students and the kind of learning experience that teachers design to engage student interest, passion and curiosity.
The classroom management technique isn’t an easy technique to maintain, academics need to be consistent with it and begin early with students. Here are the eight tips to aid your classroom management skills.
1. Acknowledge Students
Giving each of your students a handshake or a high-five and even hugging them helps connect you with your students and can assist you in determining their state of minds. A study published last year showed that greeting/acknowledging students at the door helped boost academic engagement by 20% while reducing disruptive behaviours by 9%.
2. Establish Relationships
Strong teacher-student relationship have been considered to be a good foundation aspect of the positive school experience. It is mandatory for teachers to start each academic year with a positive note such as greeting students at the door.
To establish this positive note, teachers can schedule a one-on-one meeting with students to get to know them, encourage student-led activities by giving them the opportunity to share their interests. Using good communication techniques as compliments help students also. Show empathy and focus on solutions instead of problems. All these can be used in establishing, maintaining and restoring positive interaction with students.
3. Reminders and Cues
Reminders and cues are a great way of letting students follow instructions without being too controlling. They can be in various forms. We have verbal and non-verbal. Reminders are verbals and are mostly used to control older students while using eye contact to make gestures help relate to the student that they are getting off- tasks. Setting transition routines that students can learn and easily execute without much intervention helps reduce noisy classrooms.
4. Create an Effective Classroom
Disruptive behavior occurs at a high rate when students are allowed to choose their seats, which is not always a bad choice as this gives them a sense of ownership which can be positive. Another way this can be done is by creating a welcoming space for students by adding couch, rugs, coffee tables and posters in the classroom and also setting the rules that if tasks given to students are not completed they will be moved to the desk. This has been shown to reduce disruptive behaviors and boost academic performance.
5. Give Behaviour-specific Praise
Acknowledging and rewarding students for positive behaviour can be more effective than punishing. It is great to reinforce the behaviour by offering praises, giving a positive remark aloud. It is also effective in stating clear reasons for specific instruction to students.
6. Set Clear Expectation
Instead of giving students list of laid down rules why not make the rules clear to them by including them when making the rules, by so doing this creates a sense of community and enable the student to own their behaviours in classrooms.
7. Be Active
Moving around the classroom and checking in on your students is an effective way of interacting with students, as being present enables you to control the activities in the classroom without disrupting lessons. Smiling and making eye contact with your students as you check in on them can help reduce the psychological distance with your students. Hence, boosting students’ positive feelings towards the teachers and course material while improving students’ behavior.
8. Be Consistent in Applying Set Rules
Practicing positive group reminder is a quick and affirming reminder that let a group of the student know what they should be doing and also focus on behaviors rather than students while trying to correct errors. School and classroom expectations, rules and routines should be followed and applied fairly to all students.
These techniques establish and reinforce consistent expectations for quality works from students and at the same time promote an orderly classroom.