Are You in Control of Your Classes?
Sep 18, 2008 Classroom Management 4623 Views
Teaching qualifications alone don’t make you a successful teacher. You may have a lot of knowledge in your subject but if you are not in control of your classes, you will soon quit teaching. No certifications can train you to control your students, as each session is different from the other. In some countries, students have been trained to listen to the teachers and be quiet in classrooms. In most countries, it isn’t the same experience for teachers.
When I visited Sultanate of Oman, I was startled to see the way some students behaved. There were Arabic comments, which provoked laughter among the students. I was demotivated to continue my sessions. The more I lost my temper with particular students, the worse the situation was.
Bill Page, a staff development trainer, points out “You teach in a manner that causes students to control themselves and that enables them to learn self-discipline”.
Your first interaction with a new class may not be so encouraging. Don’t lose your heart. They look at you as a teacher more than what you really are in your first interaction. Students start developing respect once they know you as a person. It may take weeks or months. If you are a skillful teacher, you will take control within a week.
You can respect a teacher for his/her knowledge, for his/her intentions, hard work, morality or many aspects and combinations of his/her personality and teaching style. Without making your students respect you, you will not be very effective in your teaching. If you get too familiar with your students, they may like you not respect you. You must know your boundary line, which should never be allowed to cross. I have seen some ‘reputed’ teachers who compromised their values and became popular. Others have completely shut the door for the students to interaction and failed to create rapport. Creating rapport is reaching your teaching goals through proper means.
Recently, I interviewed a young female teacher. I asked her, “What will be reaction if students don’t listen to you?”. She answered, “I will show them who the boss is”. She said that she would not hesitate to send them out. Though she was a good teacher, she didn’t understand the need to create mutual respect. Your anger can never be a weapon to control classes.
You can build the rapport through different ways:
v Your Subject knowledge
v Interesting classroom discussions
v A lively game
v Classroom meetings to discuss various issues – once a week or month
v Sticking to teacher’s values
v Respecting learners’ feelings
Once you build the rapport and make your students respect you, you take control of your class.
Do you think you can maintain discipline?" asked the Superintendent. "Of course I can," replied Stuart. "I'll make the work interesting and the discipline will take care of itself."
-- E. B. White, Stuart Little