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What are the 5effective classroom management strategies?

5 Ways to Effectively Manage Your Class

February 27, 20244 min read

The classroom is vital to the learning environment. The order, the processes, the procedures.

Obviously, the good classroom teacher will have these completely ingrained in the students. So when a stranger (you) comes in to disrupt their world you can expect, “We don’t do it that way.”

And the students are perfectly entitled to be protective of their classroom. So be prepared to ask the students about procedural matters.

Don’t feel threatened if your way is the wrong way - because it is different to their usual practice.

Never force the issue by saying, “Well we are going to do it my way.”

If there is a conflict between you and their regular teacher, they will REJECT YOU!

#1 Set the classroom up for success

Unfortunately, you don’t have much choice here. The classroom only belongs to you for a short period of time. You are really only a classroom sitter.

But there are some things you can do to help. Don’t be afraid to move some furniture around to suit the day you have planned. I suggest taking a photo with your phone so you know how it looks. Then you could return it to its original condition at the end of the day.

The physical layout should reflect your teaching style. If you want students to collaborate in small groups, for example, organise them around tables or clusters of desks. For whole-group discussions try a circle or U-shaped desk configuration. If you plan on individualised instruction, you might set up learning stations.

Keep YOUR equipment within easy reach and secure all your valuables. Easily accessible materials and supplies can eliminate delays, disruptions, and confusion for students.

Generally, I prefer desks in cooperative groups of four - any more generally becomes more complex to manage. So if necessary, jus put a bit of distance between large groups. It is amazing how little is needed to create a perceived barrier.

I know some relief teachers who bring a bean bag to school since reading and interacting with groups on the floor is their modus operandi.

Good for them.

#2 Make learning rewarding

I know the old argument about the intrinsic worth of education and that kids should not work just for rewards - Blah! Blah! Blah!

But honestly, would you work if you didn’t get paid? Kids love rewards - (and so do I!)

I use a business card approach just one of my strategies. I used to make up my own which proved a laborious task. Now I get them made for next to nothing.

Teaching Strategy, Make Learning Rewarding, Classroom Management, Teaching Resources, Relief Teaching

You can get 250 very cheaply and you can design your own. Leave a space for a child’s name and hand a few out very early in the day so kids know what you are offering.

Imagine handling this to a child and telling them to take that home to their Mum or Dad. What a buzz that would create around the classroom.

#3 Optimise Classroom Flow

The way kids move around the room is important to the success of the learning environment. Make certain pathways to the common areas are clear and free. This includes the bin, the tap, and your desk.

I am sure the classroom teacher would already have this in place, but it is worth checking beforehand. Stand back and have a critical look at the thoroughfare areas of the classroom.

#4 Do not tolerate interference

It is a sad fact that there will be a class where you will encounter turkeys. You know the kids who spend the whole day going “Gobble! Gobble! Gobble!” At least that is what it sounds like. Certainly, it makes as much sense.

These are the stressors of the day. Statistically, in a class of 25, you will encounter about 4 unfortunately.

Hopefully, you will have recognised them early and put in place the proactive steps of standing close and maintaining eye contact.

You need to cut them off quickly. The rule, as a relief teacher, is - “Don’t interfere with the learning of others!”

Let the turkeys know that you will not tolerate their interference when others want to learn. And if they sulk and sit at their desk - well that will work! As long as they aren’t interfering with others!

Of course, some turkeys fly only when they have an audience. You will recognise these turkeys early in the day. In this case, give them an audience. If one starts to spread wings, deny him/her the audience and say (in as quiet a voice as you can), “Class, I would like you to turn your chairs and look this way.”

And if that doesn’t work - well, you know what happens to turkeys eventually, don’t you?

#5 Know the exit if things go pear-shaped

On every flight I have taken, The flight attendant always asks passengers to be aware of the nearest exit.

In the classroom, particularly if you are new, you need to consider the exit strategies if things go pear-shaped.

Your teaching colleague next door will be the best point of call and usually a great source of support.

Want to learn all the 50 incredible tips to transform your classroom experience?

Click on this link now 👉 50 Effective Teaching Strategies for Casual Teachers

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