9 Tips for Better Discipline in the Classroom
Oct 11, 2010 Classroom Management 3656 Views
It is not uncommon for new teachers to have trouble figuring out how to handle classroom discipline. It's no small task trying to keep a roomful of students in line while trying to teach them the lessons you have planned for the day. These nine suggestions might be helpful to new teachers, making it possible for them to make it through the school day with fewer disruptions.
1. When dealing with students, always be fair. Your students will learn very quickly to discern whether or not you treat everyone the same. Getting respect from them requires fair and consistent discipline policies. Even your best students need to be disciplined appropriately. Keeping track of where your students are on the discipline scale can be difficult with so many distractions during the day. If you need to, keep a reference sheet in the badge holder on your teacher lanyards. Write them down and refer to them any time disciplinary action must be taken.
2. Stay consistent throughout the day. Don't take it easy on students as the day wears on just because you get tired. Kids love to test you and see just what they can slip past you. Stick with your plan for discipline. If you do, you are bound to see the number of outbursts and disruptions increase.
3. Do your best to keep confrontations out of sight of the rest of the classroom. Battles like these always end up creating winners and losers. As the classroom authority, you are responsible for making sure every follows the rules. If you deal with problem students in private, they will not feel the need to play tough in front of their classmates, and they will respect you for dealing with them one-on-one.
4. Don't put off dealing with discipline issues. The sooner you restore order to the classroom the more effective it will be.
5. Don't be afraid to use humor to diffuse the situation. It can help you get your students back on the right track by surprising them. Be sure not be sarcastic, as using sarcasm in the classroom can backfire.
6. Remember that your students are capable of following all of the rules, and never expect any less than the best from them. If you don't expect them to follow your rules, it's a pretty safe bet they won't. Regularly remind them of the rules and your expectations for their behavior. For example, before a field trip you might say, "I expect that we will all be good listeners and keep our hands to ourselves while we are at the museum."
7. Plan ahead and don't be caught without something constructive to do. Even your free time should be structured. Without a definite purpose, the children may turn to chattering or start to feel that academic instruction is not important. Plan a couple of extra activities for every day, just in case you find yourself with a few minutes of unstructured time.
8. Make the rules easy to follow. Establish a few rules that are easy to remember and understand. The more complicate your rules system, the less likely your students will be able to follow it.
9. Finally, get more advice from fellow teachers. You can check your favorite teacher blog or teacher forums online for expert advice from seasoned veterans.