Debbi Patton EDTP 600 9040– Classroom Management Plan
The Necessity of Having a Classroom Management Plan Developing a comprehensive Classroom Management plan should be considered a mandatory step for every teaching candidate. I believe this is important because students deserve to have a structured and safe environment that will allow them to learn and ideally obtain content mastery. An effective Classroom Management plan will inspire meaningful learning, decrease distraction, and establish expectations. If there is no Classroom Management plan in place there is a greater likelihood for confusion, mistakes, and wasted time. My Classroom Management plan should be viewed as a tool and resource to benefit my students and enhance their overall learning experience. It should never be viewed as a disciplinary tool or one meant to stifle creativity or individuality. My Philosophy My overall goal is to provide my students with a reliable, safe, and supportive environment. It will be clear from the start that the coursework and assignments will be challenging and that I expect them to put forth their best effort each and every time. I will stress that mistakes will inevitably happen, but we will view them as growth opportunities. Students should know that I expect each and every one of them to pursue and achieve individual mastery. I will clearly communicate what each class entails, what their participation should look like, and what specific criteria they are responsible for fulfilling. I firmly believe that differentiated instruction will be the answer to this. It is my responsibility as a teacher to provide instruction and assignments that connect with all of my students. Discussion and interactivity will commonplace in my classroom and encouraged. Not only can students learn from each other, but I too can learn from them. We will work together to establish classroom civility rules and a culture of respect will be enforced at all times. Each student will be expected to participate in class and to collaborate with their fellow students. I will work to provide activities and assignments that cater to my students’ interests and allow them to partner with peers who possess complimentary skillsets. Perhaps most importantly we will adopt a “yet” mentality. My students will understand that if they put forth their best effort, they will always be given the chance to receive feedback and fix their mistakes. True mastery can only happen if I give my students the chance to reflect upon their current level of understanding and work to improve upon it. I will also pursue a culturally responsive teaching approach that draws upon my students’ unique needs and cultures. This will play an important role in the classroom from establishing our classroom norms to selecting supplemental selections of literature. In addition, I will strive to convey an authoritative but approachable attitude to my students. While I want them to feel comfortable around me, it is imperative that they respect my authority. They will see me as their teacher NOT their peer. Due to my young appearance, it will be important for me to dress
professionally and moderately conservative while I am establishing my leadership. This will be the standard for me regardless of the school dress code. Theories I will Draw From As a future educator who is drawn to a constructivist approach to teaching, it is not surprising that I have gravitated towards two particular classroom management theories: Glasser’s Choice Theory and Kohn’s Student Directed Learning Theory. Both theories integrate well with a constructivist and studentcentric approach. Glasser’s Choice Theory For Glasser’s Choice Theory, there tends to be three common characteristics found in classrooms that adhere to the choice model: Minimized coercion, Focus on Quality, and Emphasis on Self Evaluation (Sullo, 2011). These are three characteristics that will be a part of my daily classroom management. My goal is to inspire and encourage my students to behave and learn without needing to coerce or force them. I am confident that through the of use positive reinforcement, deliberate praise, and dedicated relationship building efforts, I can avoid using coercion or punishment to “make” them behave. I would rather have students who listen to me and willingly engage because they respect me and do not want to disappoint me than a student who feels trapped and forced. Since concept-mastery and the “yet” mentality will be staples in my classroom and my planning, it aligns completely with a quality focus as opposed to a quantity focus. I want my students to develop a deeper understanding and mastery of a concept. This will be demonstrated through application. I will allow students to re-do assignments up to two times if they meet their deadlines and showcase true effort. The last characteristic in Glasser’s Choice Theory that I will incorporate into my Classroom Management plan is the utilization of self-evaluation. My students should have a sense of ownership regarding their behavior, understanding, and assignments. I will work to give them examples and resources that they can use to enhance their writing assignments as well as give them a chance to critically evaluate their own contributions (particularly in the context of group work). Rubrics, clear expectations, and templates should always be provided to give my students parameters for self-critique and evaluation. Kohn’s Student Directed Learning Theory As a teaching candidate pursuing my certification in English, I feel fortunate to have more flexibility in what I can teach and the way I can teach. English lends itself naturally to discussion, analysis, and subjectivity. Those components are important factors I will want to keep in mind when refining my Classroom Management plan and lesson planning. One way I can bring those to the forefront is by leveraging Kohn’ Student Directed Learning Theory. Kohn’s theory places a heavy emphasis on student interest, curiosity, and limited standardized testing (Hussung, 2017). I can incorporate that into my Classroom Management plan by encouraging questions, being open to student input, supplying differentiated instruction, and by providing a classroom set-up that lends itself to discussion.
Setting Up My Classroom Seating After conducting multiple field observations this semester, I have begun to consider how I would like to arrange my room. When it comes to seating I would ideally like to have a “U” shaped set-up. I understand that this can be difficult depending on the room size. The appeal of “U” shaped set-up is that it fosters a sense of classroom unity, helps command attention to the center of the room (where the board will be), and will allow me to move around the classroom easily and observe. The “U” shape can also take the form of a modified horseshoe if necessary due to space limitations (Watson, 2017). Under no circumstances would I like to have my students with their backs to me. This makes it harder to gauge their nonverbal communication and can be uncomfortable for students. I have also come to the conclusion that I will assign seats. There are a few reasons I will be taking this approach. 1. Since some of my students may have IEP’s that dictate where they should sit, it helps to make assigned seats a classroom norm instead of an embarrassing differentiator. 2. It helps to ease social anxiety and cut down on cliques in the classroom. 3. It forces students to integrate. Often times students gravitate towards others (examples: gender, race, religion, ability level) like them and they miss out on getting to know their peers. 4. It allows for differentiation and flexible grouping when necessary. 5. It will aid in setting the tone for class and give students their “spot” in the classroom. Classroom Décor My desire is to teach high school English. Due to the age of my students, I want to set an academic and inspiring tone through my classroom décor. I personally don’t feel that bright colors or childlike decorations are appropriate at this level. I will be expecting my students to hold themselves to a high standard and my room needs to reflect that. I also don’t want to have large amounts of white space. Blank walls create a sense of desolation that I want to avoid. I would like my walls/boards to reflect a mixture of academia and inspiration. Ways that I could achieve this include: 1. Displaying inspirational quotes that speak to our “yet” mentality and growth approach. 2. Having posters of images related to core and supplemental texts we will study throughout the room 3. Educational posters: these could include a poster conveying common grammar mistakes, a list of synonyms, or a poster (that would rotate quarterly) with SAT words to watch for. Other Classroom Set-Up Logistics Other factors that I will want to consider when setting up my room include my desk décor, technology, and supplemental materials and accompanying storage. I would like my desk to be located in the front of the room to the side of the board. Ideally, when students face the board, my desk will be on the left-hand side. My desk should be neat and organized. It is important that I model that expectation for my students. I will have desk and file organizers to assist me with the organization process. I will also have personal items on the desk. These could include
pictures of my dog and family and a personalized coffee mug. I want my students to get a glimpse of the “human” side of me. I believe this will help to build trust and improve rapport. When it comes to technology I would love to have the following items in my classroom. 1. Chrome books – Throughout my observations I have been astonished by the impact technology can have on student learning. Ideally, I will have a set of chrome books for my classroom that will be assigned to students to use during specific activities and lessons. 2. Google classroom – I will absolutely want to set-up google classroom for each class. Not only is google classroom free, but it provides a place for students to access handouts, store information, and interact inside and outside of the classroom. It also makes it easy for students to turn in assignments and quizzes. 3. Promethean board – Ideally I will have a promethean or smart board to use in my classroom. If this isn’t possible, I will at the very least need a projector that allows me to display my computer on a screen or on the white board at the front of the classroom. While my supplemental materials list will inevitably change as I plan my lessons, here is a list of items I could envision myself wanting access to: 1. Mini-whiteboards and dry-erase markers 2. Pencils (colored and normal) and pens (variety of colors) 3. Markers (permanent and washable) 4. Additional art/presentation supplies: poster board, construction paper, glue, and scissors 5. One or two extra copies of each core text (in case a student forgets their copy at home that day) 6. Storage: I will want to have a storage unit or small bookshelf that will hold the additional core text copies, a labeled bin for students to place their journals in (each class period will have its own bin), and any other supplies that I might need readily available. All of the art supplies should be located in a cabinet that I can lock as necessary. Classroom Rules & Procedures During the first class of each semester, my classes will establish an agreed upon classroom code of conduct. I will provide a suggested code of conduct and then open it up for debate. At the end of our debate, I will make any necessary adjustments to my suggested list, print out a copy, and have each print their name and sign. I will scan this document in and upload it to google classroom so students can have access to it. I will also frame it and post it in the classroom to serve as a daily reminder. It is important to note, that there are some components which will not be up for debate. Those include a zero-tolerance teasing/harassment policy and policies relating to intentional plagiarism and cheating. Other classroom rules that I will implement include: 1. Bathroom policy: Students will be free to use the restroom when they need to. They don’t need to ask permission. We will have two bathroom passes available next to the door. Students can take one and exit the room. If both passes are taken they are expected to wait for their classmate to return before taking their turn. I will make this policy clear during the first class and communicate that students can lose their bathroom privileges if they habitually make excessive or extended trips. 2. Open dialogue: I want my students to feel comfortable asking questions and discussing. To help foster an open environment, I will allow students to ask questions without raising their hands if
there is a natural break in the lecture or conversation. One of our classroom guidelines should be to wait before speaking and to avoid interrupting. This also gives me the opportunity to ask questions from all of my students without constantly going to those who are raising their hands with the answer. This helps to promote active learning and engage all of my students. 3. Late work: I will accept late work, but it will be docked 5% each school day that it is late. After a full week has passed, I will not accept the assignment. I will, however, allow my students to turn in one assignment late each semester without suffering any penalty. In order to receive this benefit, they will be required to email me 12 hours in advance of when the assignment is due. They will be given an additional three days to turn in the assignment. Establishing classroom procedures will be a key component in developing a safe and reliable learning environment for my students as well as setting clear expectations. Procedures that I will want to implement in my classroom include: 1. Greeting my students: If possible, I would like to stand by the door every day and greet my students as they walk in. This acknowledges that they are here, that they matter, and that I care. 2. Communicating the daily objective, agenda, and homework: Every day I will have the lesson objective written on the board, the agenda of what students can expect to happen during that class period, and the homework for that night. We will review this at the start of every class after they have completed their journal question. 3. Daily journal prompt: When students enter my room they will be expected to review the daily journal prompt on the board. The prompt may deal with their homework, the previous lesson, or simply get their schemas related to a new unit moving. This standardized exercise will allow me to gauge where my students are at and forces a connection to existing knowledge at the start of class. 4. Flexible grouping: By making flexible grouping a normal part of the class routine, it allows me the opportunity to group my students based on a number of different factors including ability levels, personality types, and interests. In addition, students will learn how to work with a variety of their peers and improve their collaboration skills. 5. Strategic questioning: I will make it a point to ask my students a variety of close and openended questions. I will have a chart that will indicate who I have asked questions to so no students fall through the cracks. I will also make it a point to vary my wait time based on the question’s level of difficulty and the student’s comfort level. 6. Constant Evaluation: My students should expect to see me hovering around the classroom and gauging their progress. I never want to be the teacher who sits at their desk the entire class period. Students should also expect DYRIT (did you read it) quizzes and exit tickets as other forms of regular evaluation. Praise and Correction Techniques In an ideal classroom every student would pay attention, soak up the lesson, and apply their newly learned knowledge flawlessly…. that, however, is not usually the case. It is inevitable that there will be both exemplary and negative behavior in my classroom. I need to have strategies in place to praise the exemplary and discourage the distractions. Praising students when they have done an outstanding job can be an effective motivator for not only them but their classmates. However, praise must be given deliberately and correctly (“It pays to praise,” 2017). When it comes to praising my students, I will make it a point to highlight specifically what it is
they have done and why it deserves praise. This clearly communicates what expectation they not only met but exceeded, and other students can look for ways to model that. When it comes to offering correction, I am a firm believer that verbal correction should be the last step taken with a student. Prior to discreetly offering a hushed correction, I will look to use expectation rephrasing, deliberate praise of those who are setting a good example, nonverbal signals, and proximity control. Conclusion As I stated in my introduction, I believe that a comprehensive Classroom Management plan is an important component to ensuring meaningful learning and student success. Being entrusted with a studentâ€™s education is both a privilege and a huge responsibility. It is important that I remain flexible and continually refine my plan as necessary. This is a big step in ensuring not only my growth as an educator but content mastery for my students. Sources Feldman, A. (n.d.). The classroom management plan. Retrieved November 06, 2017, from http://people.umass.edu/~afeldman/beingnewteacher/classmanageplan.html Gillespie, R. (2016, May 02). 4 reasons teachers should assign seats. Retrieved November 06, 2017, from http://www.brilliant-insane.com/2016/05/4-reasons-teachers-assign-seats.html Hussung, T. (2017, February 06). Understanding three key classroom management theories. Retrieved November 06, 2017, from https://online.husson.edu/classroom-management-theories/ It pays to praise: The benefits of classroom compliments. (2011, November 15). Retrieved November 06, 2017, from https://archive.imaginelearning.com/blog/2011/11/it-pays-to-praise-the-benefitsof-classroom-compliments/ Kratochwill, T. R., DeRoos, R., & Blair, S. (n.d.). Classroom management. Retrieved November 05, 2017, from http://www.apa.org/education/k12/classroom-mgmt.aspx Sullo, B. (23, July 2011). Choice theory. Retrieved November 06, 2017, from http://www.funderstanding.com/educators/choice-theory/ Watson, A. (2017, October 06). Ideas for classroom seating arrangements. Retrieved November 06, 2017, from https://thecornerstoneforteachers.com/classroom-seating-arrangements/