Philosophy of Management
I believe my teaching philosophies align with the democratic teaching style. Not only does this theory allow for the development of community, responsibility, and intrinsic motivation, but also contributes to the significant decrease of misbehavior.
While I do plan to implement Dreikur’s ideals by allowing my students to be a part of making the class slogan, I know I want to have it be encouraging. With the focal point being steady growth, I would want my slogan to be something like “It’s okay to not know, but not to not try” or “Everyday work harder and smarter than the day before”. This encourages a sense of responsibility for ones work, continual growth, and a strong sense of community as students are working towards a common goal.
Children thrive off of schedules, therefore I would utilize some of the wall space for our daily schedule. I would also use this space to project classroom roles and a calendar. Additionally, one of the most influential ways to utilize wall space for emerging readers and writers are various types of word walls. Further, students are able to be reminded of the academic phrasing they should use within discussions. While this can be incorporated in a variety of ways, such as interesting words, content specific words, and newly found words, I definitely plan to implement a commonly used words word wall in my ELLs native language as a reference point.
My behavior plan for students will be explicitly outlined for students through the demonstration of classroom rules. According to Glasser, educators can only control the behavior of themselves, however by meeting the five needs of individuals he outlines, I can help my students make strong behavioral choices. Additionally, Kounin’s theory that instructional practices need to be reflected upon in order to maintain positive classroom behavior is something I will implement into my daily planning. Kounin also believed strongly in the power of desists, correcting students behavior for the ripple effect. Not only with this cause other students to be more likely to behave, but also will point out to students exactly where and how they are breaking class rules.
Ultimately, I believe children’s education should be based around building intrinsic motivation. This I believe has to do greatly with the removal of reward systems, as well as providing children with encouragement rather than praise. As expressed by Dreikur, students build more intrinsic motivation from encouragement.
Again, following Dreikur’s theory, I would incorporate student input into my classroom rules. While I would use their input, I would also incorporate any rules I felt were necessary but not touched on by students. Ultimately, Jones outlines three main rules for building his rules. This includes do not make a rule you’re not willing to enforce every time, have a few general rules for behavior and work, and make rules simple, clear, and shared by all students. Here is the list I would utilize without student input, following these three rules:
- Be on time at the beginning of school and after lunch/ recess/specials
- Come prepared with completed homework and supplies
- Be respectful to yourself, students, teachers, staff, and supplies/property
- Always try and perform better than the day before
- Complete assignments to the best of your ability
- Pay attention and participate
- Take responsibility for your actions
- Listen to others and follow directions
- Obey all school-wide rules
Hierarchy of Consequences for Rule in Fractions
As I believe in Dreikur’s theory of democratic teaching, I will utilize his diffusion techniques to address misbehavior. Additionally, I will intervene early in misbehavior and utilize logical consequences to limit the misbehavior and create a sense of support for my students.
Case 1: Student does not participate in class. While he is not outwardly distracting, he does not contribute or complete his work. Rather than leave him be since he is not outwardly misbehaving, I would intervene early and discuss this with him directly and individually. First, I would attempt to identify the perceived weakness the student has that is resulting in feelings of inadequacy. Additionally, I would discuss how we could work towards this and provide future continuous support in building self esteem and socialization skills. Finally, I would consistently encourage active participation and provide support for the student going forward.
Case 2: Student is being mean to a class mate and continuously picking on others. I would address this issue as soon as it arose, again for early intervention. I would then have an individual talk with the student, showing them explicitly where they broke the rules we created together. The student would be provided the opportunity to voice their side and explain their actions. Finally, we would discuss how to change the behavior going forward and collectively come up with a logical consequence. If the behavior continued, I would reach out to administration after using the stoplight approach as this is a more serious case.
Elementary school students need structure throughout their day and this begins with a consistent morning meeting. Prior to this, I would expect students to unpack their bags and be in their seat by the time morning announcements begin. I would then begin morning meeting in which we would do a fun warm up and go over the schedule for the day, again to build structure as well as a stronger sense of community. Further, I would incorporate some form of show and tell to encourage kids to share their own identities and cultures with their classmates.
End of the day Routine
Before the end of the day, students will be instructed by table groups to go to their cubbies and pack up their bags. After, we will gather around the carpet to have a closing meeting, again instilling a sense of community within the classroom. They will follow the school rules for dismissal, leaving when walkers/kiss n ride are announced or their bus has arrived.
Gaining Student Attention
Gaining students attention is a great way to incorporate some fun into the classroom, as Glasser states, this is one of the five essential needs for students. I would likely incorporate a call back statement in which I say one part then students say the next. Choosing this call back is a great opportunity to incorporate student input, following the democratic teaching style. Additionally, I would incorporate various languages by changing the chant to create a sense of inclusion for ELL students.
I believe children have individual learning needs and one of the most important aspects of this is flexible seating and will allow for movement often in my classroom. However, I also believe strongly in Kounin’s theory of movement within the classroom. Because of this, I must be intentional about the movement within my classroom and therefore must be clear when I want students sitting in their seat for instruction or an activity.
Leaving the Room
Due to a large number of students, I believe it is essential to have teachers permission prior to leaving the room. Additionally, I would use a bathroom pass that hang in a consistent spot so students have a visual cue as to when they are able to ask. If students are going outside of the classroom, I would also require them to take a buddy. However, I would give them ample reminders to go after lunch and specials to limit missed time in the classroom.
Holding Students Late
As I would be with my students for almost then entirety of the school day, I believe I have ample time to address needs throughout the day. I also would be hesitant to hold them after school as this could disrupt their transportation home.
Cues to Speak
Unless I have explicitly said otherwise for a specific activity, I would teach students to raise their hand and wait to be called on by the teacher prior to speaking. This age group specifically (elementary) often want to add to discussion and can be carried away by small connections that turn into long stories. Controlling when students utilize class time to share ideas is essential to monitor for strong classroom management at this age.
As Kounin expresses within his theories, movement management is essential to a classroom to keep students focused and engaged. Because of this, sharpening pencils will be introduced as a before class routine. This way, traffic within the classroom will be decreased and students will be ready to work at the beginning of class.
Turning in Work
In many scenarios, students will not be turning in work at the exact same time. Due to this, rather than having one student collect work, I will utilize a tray for students to put their work. This allows for students to work and turn in assignments at their own pace and provides organization within the classroom. However, during quizzes and tests, students will know to turn their paper upside down on their desk until all students are finished in order to minimize distraction for those still working.
Turning in make-up work
Handouts and other material will be picked up by one person for other group members. As I believe in collaboration within the classroom, tables will be put in small groups within this classroom. To minimize crowding and wasted time, an individual will pick up and distribute to the rest of the table. For materials used at the beginning of class, or after lunch/ specials, students will pick them up as they enter the classroom. There will be a designated space for students to pick up these resources so they have a consistent place to always check before entering the classroom, following Kounin’s theory of instructional movement.
As this age is fairly young, they do need lots of support in completing assignments at home. Therefore, work sent home will be fairly limited. However, for the assignments that are completed at home, students will be docked 10% a day. I will also provide them with opportunities to complete the assignment with additional support during recess or lunch.
Students will be required to make up any missed quiz, test, or assignment the same day the return to school. I will provide them with the platform to ask any final questions prior to beginning the assignment. Additionally, I would ask the student when they would like to make it up as I can not assume all parents are able to get their child to school early or pick them up late. Therefore, they can utilize recess or lunch if needed, but also have the opportunity to find a time that works for their schedule.
Late work will be accepted as I believe, especially at this age, it is better late than never. The number of class projects will be fairly limited and therefore need to be completed entirely. Because of this, students will be encouraged to still turn in their work as I will only dock 10% per day.
I will provide students will ample reminders when outside of the classroom to utilize the bathroom in an attempt to limit the time spent away from instruction. However, students will be able to ask for permission and take a pass to the bathroom when needed. Not only does asking for permission allow me to keep track of my students, but having physical passes provides the students with a physical indicator of when they can ask to go. Further, I would not gender my passes in order to maintain a safe and inclusive environment for my students, rather they would simply be bathroom passes.
Ultimately, a lesson is not as influential if it is not completed in its entirety. Because of this, I will provide ample opportunities to finish class work and even revisit topics and lessons if a majority of the class is not completed.
Ultimately, I believe the primary time to work, especially at this age, should be conducted within the classroom. Therefore, rather than assigning homework, I will primarily utilize expectations for my students in which they will practice the skills taught throughout the day. These expectations could be reading and practicing comprehension skills, or studying content for a quiz or exam.
Cell Phone Policy
Cell phones under no circumstances will be used in class. At this, students should have no reason to utilize cell phones and will have plenty of opportunities to interact with other forms of technology within the classroom.
As students will be returning to the same classroom everyday, they will be able to leave many materials in their desks. However, I would expect students to bring any materials they took home for the night as well as any assignment completed in full. I would also expect students to bring in any special materials that I instructed within the previous school day or prior.
According to Jones, teachers must implement a positive classroom culture by establishing an instructional environment that is conductive to learning and to proper behavior. Additionally, through the utilization of Dreikur’s theories, early intervention to misbehavior will create a positive culture as students misbehave less, as well as build a more trustworthy relationship with their educator. Ensuring all students have their needs met, outlined by Glasser, is also essential in instilling positivity within individual students. Finally, a positive classroom culture derives primarily from a strong sense of community I will implement in the various ways described throughout this text.
Teaching Rules and Routines
As I would utilize Dreikur’s theory, students will be members of creating the classroom rules. This will allow for me to refer back to the rules when misbehaviors arise, both enforcing and teaching students the rules. Routines will be discussed within the first day and continuously reinforced throughout by giving specific reminders early on.
Disciplinary issues will be prevented in a variety of ways, first by outlining and creating rules with students. Additionally, early intervention following Dreikur’s theories allows for disciplinary measures to be smaller as the issue will be addressed prior to any escalation. Finally, I think it is essential both as a teacher and a role model to the students to utilize Gordon’s empathetic understanding when discussing misbehaviors. The culmination of these two theories will not only result in less serious disciplinary measures, but as well as the acknowledgment of responsibility by students and overall less misbehaviors.
One of the most prevalent issues I have seen within classrooms is the lack of exposure to new cultures. I believe this factor is the core principle in creating class community. I would implement a wide variety of culturally relevant books within my class library to utilize for literacy workshops and circles. This will not only allow for students to all feel represented by texts and therefore more connected, but also provides students with a platform to safely and comfortably are their cultures in an informative way. This further builds class community as all students are more aware of their classmates identities and are able to directly make connections with them.