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Effective Classroom Management (parts: 4 & 5)

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Effective Classroom Management (parts: 4 & 5)

Post by Guest on Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:39 pm

Classroom Management Tips e-Course
Part IV: Be Specific

In the last part of this course, I discussed the connection between student confusion and classroom management. Another way teachers can reduce student confusion is by "being specific" with their directions. For example, there is a big difference between these two statements:
"Take a few minutes to answer the questions."
"Take 3 minutes to write down answers to questions 1 through 5 on your own."
See the difference.
Now, of course, the next step would be to check-for-understanding by simply having a student repeat back the directions. Speaking of being specific, did you notice that a very specific time limit is attached to the task? This is important. Whenever you put students on a particular task, make sure to attach a very specific time limit. In other words, you are putting your students "on-the-clock".

Classroom Management Tips e-Course
Part V: End Procrastination

The whole basis of these tips, and this report, is to teach you how to take a proactive approach to classroom management. However, even if you are using all these tips, even if you are using the "all-write" strategy and the "pair-share" strategy, even if you are using video, critical thinking questions, and making connections to student's interests, even if you are making your objectives clear, and checking for understanding, and even if you are giving very specific directions...you still have problems. The problem is it doesn't matter how proactive you are or how many tricks you use to try to get students involved, some students still just don't do anything, they simply procrastinate as long as they can.
These students are more than capable, they just simply procrastinate. They are the ones that say, "I don't get it" as an excuse for "not doing it".
The trick to solving this frustrating problem is in how you "monitor" the classroom after you give a set of directions.
First of all, you need to understand that teaching today does not involve the teacher sitting, or even standing, in one place. An effective classroom management teacher is constantly moving about the room. How else can you truly monitor student work?
Now, there is a tendency for teachers to want to go to their less-abled students first. This is natural, but it is also a mistake. If you go to your less-abled students first, who require more time, your procrastinators will simply procrastinate longer. Instead, you want to go to your procrastinators first with a quick "hit and run".
Here are the steps:
-First, give a set of directions.
-Next, go immediately to your procrastinator and tell him, "I'll be back in 30 seconds (or whatever specific time you choose), and I want to see you do this." Be very specific. For example, "Tom, I asked you to answer questions 1 through 5 based on the reading. I want to see you answer question number 1right now. I'll be back in 30 seconds to see how you did." -Third,make absolutely sure that you return to the procrastinator in the time you specified and continue in this manner. For example, "Great Tom, now answer the next three I'll be back in 1 minute and thrity seconds."
Procrastination is planned or intentional stalling. Getting these students on task doesn't take much, it just takes persistence.
Do this a few times and you will see your procrastinators stop procrastinating. The simple fact is they would rather do the classwork than have you keep bothering them!)
By getting the procrastinators started on the task they will now be involved in the classwork, and therefore, much less involved in any mischief. Not only that, but now you can actually spend "more" time with your less-abled students.


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