I have been a teacher for 10 years now but I can’t say that I already master the art of managing the class. Well, who does? But if you happen to manage the class effectively so easily, lucky you! I guess everyone will agree with me when I say that classroom management is a challenge both to new and seasoned teachers. One of the factors that contribute to this is class dynamics. Every year we have groups of learners with different family background, race, beliefs and etc. Thus the techniques and ways that you applied in the previous school years might not work with the new set of pupils that you have. Below are the things we, teachers, need to remember to gain the trust of our pupils to make our classroom conducive for learning.
1. Set Rules
Whether you are a classroom adviser or a subject teacher, there should be rules to follow. In my class, I ask each of my pupils rules that should be implemented in the classroom. In that way, they feel involved and valued. Kids love it when they contribute and take part in decision making!
2. Set Goals and Expectations
At the start of the school year, kids should have a clear idea of what they are expected to become. Even though my advisory class is the youngest in Primary School, I make sure that at the young age they already have goals to achieve in one week. Our goals are written on the board so they will be reminded every day.
3. Be Consistent
Consistency plays a very important role in classroom management. It strengthens the teacher-student relationship and develops trust. My pupils are no longer allowed to go to the toilet and drink water after the bell song (except when they have to poop and are sick). Rich or poor- no one is an exception of the rule.
4. Be Firm but Loving
Show and give them a parent-like love. You can be tough. You can reprimand them for misbehavior but always talk to them privately after the class. Make them understand that you are disappointed with their actions but not them. If possible, apologize (it won’t hurt your ego, if you do).
5. Appreciate and Listen
Younger Pupils love to draw and give letters to teachers. If you receive one, be grateful and say thank you with a sweet smile on your face. They are also storytellers. They love to share their experiences and thoughts. The more you listen to them, the more you understand their behavior in class.