- Traditionally we have referred to the skills of classroom management as a “bag of tricks.” Why is it necessary to have a classroom management system as opposed to “a bag of tricks?” (page 17)
When teachers use a management system as opposed to the bag of tricks, they are more consistent in how they deal with students. Because the students know what to expect, they are in more control their behavior. Consistency also helps the teacher to deal fairly with all students, so one does not feel singled out and that he or she hasn’t been picked on our dealt with unfairly.
Describe the calculations that students subconsciously make as you move from the red to the yellow to the green zones? How does working the crowd “disrupt the disruptions?” (pages 22-25)
When there is distance or obstructions between the teacher and student, the student is more likely to be off task and disruptive. The more visible a teacher is to a student and the student is to a teacher the less likely that student is to become off task.
- How does working the crowd provide “camouflage” for setting limits on disruptive students? (page 26)By working the crowd, the teacher is setting limits. This limits setting is not drawing attention to the student. This means other students are not disrupted by the teacher speaking to the off task student. The off task student it’s all said and not getting attention from other students. This helps limit class clown behavior. It also avoids embarrassing student.
Looking at the diagrams of room arrangements on pages 34-37 of Tools for Teaching, which pattern would work best for you?
My room is a fixed arrangement due to be at computer lap. I have to use the U shaped pattern, or sometimes a complete square depending on the number of students.
- If you have a classroom with work stations that cannot be moved, how could you arrange the furniture for brief presentations to the group that would allow you to work the crowd in at least an abbreviated fashion?In the past, I’ve had the students come in and sit on the floor for the direct instruction part of the class. There were several difficulties with this system space being the most important. Older students for crowded into a small area. Younger students for some reason want to sit on top of each other instead of spreading out in the space they had available.
I am considering having two different systems. For kindergarten, first, and second grades, I think I will have X’s on the floor for them to sit on. For third, fourth, and fifth grades, I will have them turn their chairs inwards towards the inside of the U during direct instruction. Due to the bathroom break situation, I am often still in the cafeteria waiting for a teacher to pick out their children when the next class is dropping off. For the upper grades, I think all had their teachers start them on a typing games program, while they’re waiting for me to get to the room.
June 29, 2008