1. Having a preventative approach to teaching and to classroom management starts within the curriculum itself and is designed to be part of the daily lesson. Although it might not be on any particular topic, setting the standards for classroom rules and behavioral norms is the first step in avoiding issues all together. As (Coloroso, 1994) stated, I would hold classroom discussions, especially in the early days, on the rules, their implications and effects they have on every student and their consequences. Within my philosophy of experimentalism, guiding students to understand what they did wrong and giving them ownership in the problem they have created, creates a classroom where students can solve problems and develop inner discipline.
2. How do students know what they should be doing or how they should be acting? Having clear expectations is essential throughout the learning process as it is in life. With clearly defined expectations, students are less likely to deviate from classroom rules or detract from the learning environment of others. Throughout the class, I will emphasize responsibility for their own learning environment and will hold them responsible for actions that are contradictive. (Coloroso, 1994)
3. One underlying principal I have never agreed with was to punish people in a negative way. Although there may be a time and a place for that, using an assertive discipline, (Lee Marlene Canter, 1976), suggest a more positive approach to contradict the negative. I would much rather hand out positive reinforcements or extra credit for a job well done, than to berate, belittle or otherwise put someone down. This type of discipline would help to build positive relationships with students and reinforce discipline.
4. The environment of the class is very important in how I view the role of the institution; as a home for education. With so many kids today going through so many different problems, having an area that is safe, clean and respected goes a long way in how the student views the role of the class. Teach them to take ownership and pride in the area they work and make them responsible for maintaining it. I see it everyday and it is the simple things like asking everyone to push in their chairs everyday when they leave and clean their areas for the next class. If that type of discipline and ownership in continually maintained by the teacher, the students will begin to internalize it. (Colorosco, 1994).
1. When I think being supportive I immediately think about being positive. It is the can do mentality that separates the quality of work we see everyday in our students. I liked reading about non-verbal discipline and to guide students to support their own self-control (Jones, 1970’s). Modeling a positive disposition and having discipline itself be a bit more positive may not fit every situation but one that we should take a careful look at in others.
2. Learning more about your students is one area in which you can truly show them that you care. It seems the more names I know and the more I know about them, the easier it is to engage that student in and out of the class. With a better understanding of their interests and or problems are, you can start to grasp what their needs actually are.
3. Building on this you can begin to meet the needs of individual students. I have just recently been informed about a hearing problem with one of my students and understanding that she might be understanding or even hearing what I am saying is a giant first step in realizing where her disruptive behavior comes from and gives me insight on how to correct it. (Kohn, 1996)
4. Being supportive but giving students the power to solve their own behaviors is a skill that I would love to mast. I believe in personal ownership and taking responsibility for your own actions. Being consistent (Lee and Marlene, 1976) and holding students accountable for their behavior, good and bad, is as important as any lesson being taught. Life is made up of choices and by being consistent with discipline will eventually build positive relationships within the classroom and reinforce appropriate behaviors and responsibility for ones actions. Building ones selpf up slowly in a corner stone to the experimentalist’s philosophy. It allows students to build on their experiences and their choices to evolve as a person and a student.
1. With ever choice, there are consequences, good or bad. Correcting students in times of bad choices is an area that I will be working on. However, with rules being laid out from day one and continually reinforced, students are likely to slowly move away from otherwise bad choices. Continually revisiting the class rules when needed (Lee and Marlene, 1976) will bring the class as a hole together when particular students are breaking them. It is a reminder of what we have agreed upon form the start and will allow me to continually help instill discipline and responsibility in my students.
2. Preventing problems before they start can be accomplished by a creating a classroom environment that is exciting and has energy. Working with the students and not against them (C.M. Charles, 2000) can build communication and trust between you and the students and even between themselves. It is better to deal with the cause than have to manage the actual misbehavior itself. It puts the responsibility on the student to build a positive, productive learning environment.
3. Students need to learn that are consequences to their actions. Within my class, my co-teacher uses the RSVP (Coloroso, 1994) and works with students to find positive ways for students to improve their behavior and actions inside and out of the class. He helps the students identify what they did wrong in person or he re-addresses the class rules with the students as a hole in the hopes of keeping other students from acting in the same fashion.
4. Creating a sense of Inner Discipline (Coloroso, 1994) helps show students what they have done wrong, has them assume ownership and shows them ways to solve the problem, all while keeping face. It is the inner discipline of the essentialist way of thinking that I want kids to get a basic understanding of the steps needed in school and in life. It is important to teach students that it is ok to make a mistake but even more than that is how to learn from that mistake. There is a great quote that goes, “Learn to fail or fail to learn” which if taken to heart can give students a sense of power over their own learning environment and their lives as a whole.
As I see it, the classroom is your own little community, with different people, learning abilities, races attitudes, beliefs, problems and clicks. Finding a way for all students to learn and be productive is about helping them find their way at the same time teach them the content at hand. Respect for others, their learning environment and for themselves is what I will strive for. If you can find a way to model that behavior and continually reinforce it in a way that will promote growth and friendship, you can then begin to branch out in other ways. It is not my goal to help students with their past, only to help them now and with their future.