Blogs on Classroom Management

Blogs on Classroom ManagementRSS
Dr. Allen MendlerJanuary 10, 2013

Early in the school year, Mr. Spriggs asked me to sit in on a conference with his most challenging student. Jon rarely participated appropriately in class, instead drawing attention to himself by "accidentally" dropping books, suddenly having coughing spells and loudly expelling air from either end. It was considered a relative victory when his disinterest expressed itself more quietly through slouched shoulders, bored yawns and feigned sleep.

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Dr. Allen MendlerNovember 12, 2012

Mrs. Nelson is teaching a lesson when she notices Mason's head on his desk with distracting noises coming from him. She cruises his way while still teaching, leans in as she nears him and quietly reminds him to sit up and stop making noises. As she walks away and resumes teaching, Mason mumbles an inappropriate epithet that contains denial of the deed and offensive language. Other students sitting nearby turn their attention away from the lesson, collectively showing a look along with a few "oohs" that unmistakably challenges their teacher with the question, "What are you going to do about it?" Mrs. Nelson stops the lesson, stares at Mason and in a scolding manner asks, "What did you say?" The power struggle is on!

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Dr. Richard CurwinOctober 23, 2012

In last month's post, I mentioned that there are two skills that separate great teachers from good ones. I explained that the first skill is the ability to reframe student behavior, to see it in new ways. Today I want to discuss the second skill: knowing how to treat students fairly by not treating them the same. Allen Mendler and I introduced the idea that fair isn't equal to the education community in 1988 in the first edition of Discipline With Dignity (an updated, more comprehensive explanation with examples is provided in the current edition). Since then, nearly all of the educators who have used our model have seen remarkable results when resolving a wide range of behavior issues. In short, treating students in a fair -- but not equal -- way works.

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Dr. Richard CurwinSeptember 21, 2012

There has been a lot of talk lately of what makes a good teacher. It is easy to make lists of hundreds of values, skills and attributes that make for good teachers, but there are two skills that separate the good teachers from the great ones. One skill is the ability to "reframe" a situation for students, which I will discuss today. The other, which I've mentioned in earlier posts, is the recognition that "fair is not equal." I will devote next month's post to some specific teaching techniques which build on this.

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José VilsonSeptember 19, 2012

Believe it or not, I had a bit of a freak-out before the first day of school. All summer, I had prepared my curriculum, re-thought my lesson plans, reflected on the energies I would put out to my students, and got plenty of professional development (specifically in science and math integration). Yet, a few hours before I went to bed, I posted on Facebook, "Always nervous about the first day of school with the students. Not because I'm scared of them, but because I want to do right by them." Despite my best efforts, I always feel like I can do better. Then, on the first day, I received a text message from one of my former students saying how much she missed her teachers -- including me.

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Matt DavisSeptember 14, 2012

It was a fascinating week in education news, with, of course, the Chicago teachers strike taking center stage.

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Danielle Moss LeeSeptember 10, 2012

Even though I haven't been a student or a classroom teacher in a long time, the beginning of a new school year still fills my stomach with butterflies. For me, September still signifies crisply ironed clothes, spotless new shoes, and clean loose-leaf paper in an as-yet-untarnished new binder. As a teacher, the summer vacation gave me the time I needed to recover from the insatiable demands that being alone in a room with 20 or so burgeoning adolescents inevitably placed on me. I spent the last weeks of summer dipping into my own pocket to make sure that my classroom was beautifully appointed with pictures, posters, and various sundry learning tools; and that my bulletin boards stood at the ready -- waiting to showcase the brilliance that was sure to emerge from my students in those early months of the school year.

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These first few weeks of school are exhilarating and exhausting for teachers. Establishing a community, building relationships with students, setting up class guidelines, making a good space for learning, getting organized with all those tech tools -- these are the items at the top of the to-do list for most teachers I know. But how do you settle down all those kids who have been running free-range all summer, and make both yourself and your students ready to dig in again to the work of teaching and learning? How do you focus on your classroom's culture while juggling the piles of paperwork and the housekeeping tasks that inevitably accompany those first few critical weeks?

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Andrew MillerSeptember 6, 2012

As educators, we are always looking for management strategies to try in the classroom. Note I said "strategies" -- not "solutions."

Many Edutopia bloggers have written about strategies and ideas for classroom management. I've also written a blog on PBL management strategies, but many of those same strategies can be used in non-PBL contexts.

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Lisa Michelle DabbsSeptember 4, 2012

Every Wednesday at 5 p.m. PT, 8 p.m. ET, I host New Teacher Chat (#ntchat) on Twitter. It's a time for new and pre-service teachers, as well as supportive administrators and experienced teachers, to gather online and have discussions about topics that are practitioner focused and supportive for the soon-to-be teacher.

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