Developing a Classroom Management Style
"Developing your classroom management style is a process. It can take years. You cannot expect to have it on the first day of school. Management styles can be very different yet all be very effective. My advice is to observe other teachers and adopt what you think will work best for you. For me, it’s an exciting mystery or puzzle when I experiment to see what will work with each new class."
-- Linda Kasarjian
In this video Linda walks us through a typical morning and the routines that she has developed that aid in her classroom management. Her classroom management style begins with:
- Developing Routines - Let the children know what you expect of them
Begin the school year by letting the children know exactly what is expected of them. This requires painstaking training in routines. Introduce each routine and spend whatever time necessary to get it right.
- Practicing and Modeling Routines
Routines are practiced, modeled and role played until they are down pat. As a result, students fall right into them and can get down to work without much delay. This will set the tone for what the teacher expects throughout the year.
- Taking Ownership - Developing Critical Thinking
Consistency, clear expectations and routines are the greatest source of comfort for children. Construct rules and procedures together. When the students take ownership for some of the routines, they are more likely to respond quickly and stick to them with fewer reminders.
For example, in a lower grade classroom...
Line spots, desk spots, and rug spots can be chosen by the children. The criteria for choosing these spots are: who would you work best with, who is better to play in the yard with, but not to sit next to during work time?
This process requires the children to reflect on how well they know themselves. It is a challenge for many, but that is the point. This will allow the teacher to run a classroom full of routine and order and at the same time have the ability to constantly ask children to look towards themselves to make decisions and to help one another. The goal is to develop responsible children who can think critically for themselves.
- Examples of Routines for the Early Grades
Using Signs and Symbols to Communicate Needs
- Additional Reading
For more information regarding classroom management please consult our best selling publication, New Teachers Handbook.