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Classroom management on academic achievement

Using an investigation to determine the effects of Classroom Management on academic achievement within a primary school located in Kingston Jamaica.


Abstract

The study was an investigation into the effects of classroom management on academic achievement within a primary school located in Kingston, Jamaica. A descriptive methodology involving the survey of the school that has an interest in the students' well performance of academic excellence. The sample included 20 randomly selected teacher all of categories from different grade, parents, and administration. A questionnaire and interview was used to collect the data. The analysis utilized a descriptive statistics used to analyze the data.


The finds reveals that there is a number of significant between classroom management and student academic achievements. However, much more in-depth research will need to be undertaken for concrete evidence to be maintained. These significant finds point to the fact that some of the teachers are aware of what classroom management does to academic achievement but only a few have adequate training and support from stakeholders. An implication is the entire stakeholder collaborating together will enhance classroom management. In so doing academic achievements can be achieved within this primary school in Kingston Jamaica.


Chapter 1- Introduction

According to Brophy et.al `1976, almost all surveys of teacher effectiveness that management skills are of primary importance in determining teaching success, whether it is measured by student learning or by ratings. Thus, management skills are crucial and fundamental. Classroom management first became a popular topic in education during the 1970's and 1980's, (Jones, 2000). The focus in these early years was primarily on behaviour management, used to control and shape students' behaviour to conform to school rules. “Consequences, rewards and punishment were used to guide students to conform to the rules chosen by the classroom teacher. Classroom management using an authoritarian or punitive approach did repress disorderly behaviour, but it did not foster student growth or allow the acquisition of more sophisticated modes of learning, such as critical thinking and reflection” (Jones, 2000).


In the 1990's, a new paradigm of classroom management emerged, based on the democratic process, humanism, and consideration for diversity. Classroom management developed beyond a set of educational techniques to become ",...a complex process in which an environment is constructed in an ongoing, reciprocal manner,(Matalon1998) " . It is with this in mind that the researcher sort to explore how classroom management will impact academic performance. It is estimated that classroom teachers spent thirty to fifty percent of their in-class time handling behaviour problems. (Charles,1983) Most of these problems were relatively minor disruptions which originated in the classroom, and were often interpersonal in nature. The disruptive student might ",....challenge teacher authority, interrupt, talk out of turn, respond loudly, argue, react emotionally, or socialize in class. (Woolfolk, 1998). The researcher believe that if so much time is spent managing the classroom then what percent is spent teaching the student to ensure outstanding academic performance, if rules were mutually agreed upon by the entire class, making them socially valid to the students which provided structure, and helped to develop a productive classroom environment.


To break this cycle of teacher control and student compliance patterns, a proactive classroom management process was adopted by some teachers, hence the researcher decided to investigate the effect of classroom management on academic achievement within a local primary school in Kingston Jamaica. The proactive process focused on fostering student involvement and cooperation in decision-making, setting ground rules, and problem-solving to establish a productive learning environment. Involved students appreciated the classroom environment when they felt accepted as individuals with unique differences and worthwhile opinions. Classroom management which was culturally responsive, and based on developing connectedness and community fostered more class participation, self-discipline, and higher expectations by both the students and the teacher. “Teachers who managed democratic, cooperative classrooms enjoyed students who were more involved, responsible, and academically successful” (Levine, 2002).


Problem Statement

The researcher's interest into the effect of classroom management and academic performance was based on the recent results of the various examinations taken by students and whether students' success could be better measured more emphasis was spent on academic performance than classroom management by the teachers and students alike. The researcher believe that if less time is spent to managing class room issues then student will see a significant increase in their academic performance.


Research question

  1. What measures can teachers employ to improve academic success through classroom management?

  2. What are the implications classroom management have on academic achievement?

  3. How can all the stakeholders collaborate to help improve classroom management?

Significant of Study

This investigation in to the effect of classroom management on academic performance within a primary school in Kingston is intend to benefit all the stakeholders such as teacher, students, guidance counsellor and administrators. This research will provide the stakeholders with specific strategies for creating positive, supportive, respectful environment that encourages all students to view themselves and learning in a positive light. The research will also increase the stakeholders' ability to empower students to believe in themselves, understand the learning environment, and view the classroom as a place where their dignity is enhanced and where they can direct and take credit for their own learning.


However, the researcher strongly believe that in order to create classrooms that will help an increasing number of students succeed in life, stakeholders must implement many new approach in light of their personal teaching styles and teaching situations in order to ensure outstanding academic performance.


Definition of Terms

Well - managed Classroom. Proactive, democratic, humanistic classroom environment in which the teacher and students mutually set rules that are conducive to cooperative and relevant learning. Learning experiences are planned, incorporating cultural context, diversity, and allowing for a variety of individual and group processes. Intrinsic motivation and self-discipline are cultivated using encouragement, caring, and collaboration.


Poorly - managed Classroom. Teacher controlled environment structured to elicit student compliance to fixed rules, often through coercion. Authoritative management used to enforce classroom structure, using reward and punishment in response to student behaviours. Extrinsic motivation and external discipline applied using praise or reprimand, silencing, and isolation tactics to remove disruptive students from the classroom environment.


Academic Achievement. Evidence of knowledge acquisition, literacy, and learning assessed through student assignments, class participation, test scores, and individual and cumulative grades.


Chapter 2 - Literature Review

Glasser (1984) states that control is necessary for the psychological balance in one's life. It is a common trait of human beings to want control in their lives. The researcher in this review will attempt to express the need for effective classroom management and academic performance. Teachers do not generally want to give control to their students. Teachers are instructed that the mark of a good teacher is that the teacher is in control of the class. (Taylor, 1987) The amount of control that teachers have in the class is often seen by the administration as a measurement of the quality of a teacher. Administrators are usually happy if a teacher never sends a student to the office and interpret this as proof that the teacher is in control and must be doing a good job. (Edwards, 1994). However, often times if this were the case then why is it that the academic performance of our students still lag behind. Teachers fear that students with more control will want to learn what the teacher wants to teach and in will put more strain in the teacher hence a teacher would prefer to have control issues than having more work to do like research topic that will be of interest to the students. It is the responsibility of a teacher to teach students that students choose how they act. "The teacher's task is to help students make good choices by making clear the connection between student behavior and its consequences" (Emmer, 1986). The researcher believes that if set expectation, motivating the students and maintaining a learning environment at the initial stage when school begins then there will be effective classroom management and the success rate of academic performance will be outstanding.


AcClassroom management is the orchestration of the learning environment of a group of individuals within a classroom setting. In the early 1970s classroom management was seen as separate from classroom instruction. Teachers' management decisions were viewed as precursors to instruction, and were treated in the literature as if they were content-free. The image was of a teacher first attending to classroom management, and then beginning instruction without further reference to management decisions. Research in the 1980s, however, demonstrated that management and instruction are not separate, but are inextricably interwoven and complex.


A teacher's classroom-management system communicates information about the teacher's beliefs on content and the learning process. It also circumscribes the kinds of instruction that will take place in a particular classroom. A classroom in which the teacher takes complete responsibility for guiding students' actions constitutes a different learning environment than one in which students are encouraged and taught to assume responsibility for their own behaviours. Content will be approached and understood differently in each of these settings. Furthermore, more intellectually demanding academic work and activities in which students create products or encounter novel problems require complex management decisions. This correlation between instructional activity and management complexity further reinforces the interrelated nature of classroom management and curriculum.


The interwoven nature of classroom management and classroom instruction is especially easy to see from a student perspective. Students have at least two cognitive demands on them at all times: academic task demands (understanding and working with content) and social task demands (interacting with others concerning that content). This means that students must simultaneously work at understanding the content and finding appropriate and effective ways to participate in order to demonstrate that understanding. The teacher must facilitate the learning of these academic and social tasks. Thus from the perspective of what students need to know in order to be successful, management and instruction cannot be separated.


As a result of this broadened definition of classroom management, research has moved away from a focus on controlling behaviour and looks instead at teacher actions to create, implement, and maintain a learning environment within the classroom. Everything a teacher does has implications for classroom management, including creating the setting, decorating the room, arranging the chairs, speaking to children and handling their responses, putting routines in place (and then executing, modifying, and reinstituting them), developing rules, and communicating those rules to the students. These are all aspects of classroom management.


Creating and implementing a learning environment means careful planning for the start of the school year. The learning environment must be envisioned in both a physical space and a cognitive space. The physical space of the classroom is managed as the teacher prepares the classroom for the students. Is the space warm and inviting? Does the room arrangement match the teacher's philosophy of learning? Do the students have access to necessary materials? Are the distracting features of a room eliminated? Attending to these and similar questions aids a teacher in managing the physical space of the classroom.


Teachers must also consider the cognitive space necessary for a learning environment. This cognitive space is based upon the expectations teachers set for students in the classroom and the process of creating a motivational climate. Effective teachers create and implement classroom management practices that cultivate an engaging classroom environment for their students. Two specific areas of cognitive space that teachers include in their plans are setting expectations (i.e., rules and procedures) and creating a motivational climate.


Setting Expectations

Teacher in the classroom should set expectation at the start of the school year is crucial to effective management. A significant aspect of this beginning is the teacher's establishment of expectations for student behaviour, which are expressed through rules and procedures. Rules indicate the expectations for behaviour in the classroom, and for how one interacts with one's peers and the teacher. Procedures have to do with how things get done. Rules can be, and frequently are, developed with the students' help, which increases the likelihood of compliance.


Ultimately, with or without student input, the teacher must have a picture of what code of behaviour is essential for the classroom to function as desired. Both rules and procedures must be taught, practiced, and enforced consistently. Included with the development of rules and procedures is the accountability system of the classroom, which must communicate to students how they are held responsible for the academic work that they do.


Researchers have confirmed that effective classroom managers begin the year by setting expectations. In school level better managers also consistently analyze classroom tasks, teach going-to-school skills, see the classroom through students' eyes, and monitor student behaviour from the beginning of the year. These characteristics are similar at the infant and basic school as well as in some homes, where better managers also explain rules and procedures, monitor student behaviour, develop student accountability for work, communicate information, and organize instruction from the first day of school. Research has shown that teachers whose students demonstrated high task engagement and academic achievement implement a systematic approach toward classroom management at the beginning of the school year. Therefore, one of the critical aspects of managing classrooms effectively, or managing classrooms in ways to enhance student learning, is setting expectations.


Motivational Climate

An essential part of organizing the classroom involves developing a climate in which teachers encourage students to do their best and to be excited about what they are learning. There are two factors that are critical in creating such a motivational climate: value and effort. To be motivated, students must see the worth of the work that they are doing and the work others do. A teacher's demonstration of value shows students how their work is worthwhile and is connected to things that are important for them, including other learning and interests. Effort ties the time, energy, and creativity a student uses to develop the "work," to the value that the work holds. One way that teachers encourage effort is through specific praise, telling students specifically what it is that they are doing that is worthwhile and good. In combination an understanding of the value of academic tasks and the effort necessary to complete these tasks motivate students to learn.


It is possible to create a setting that appears to be well managed, where classroom arrangement, rules, and procedures are operating well, but where little actual learning takes place. However, when a teacher creates structure and order, as well as a learning environment in which students feel the excitement of learning and success, then the classroom can truly be said to be well managed. At the beginning of the year, teachers must set expectations and create a motivational climate for learning and combine this with orchestrating the physical space in order to both create and implement a successful classroom management system.


Maintaining a Learning Environment

A teacher's classroom management decisions do not stop after the planning and establishment that is crucial to beginning the school year. As the school year progresses, classroom management involve maintaining the learning environment through conscientious decision-making concerning students and the classroom.


Teachers in a classroom teach groups of students. Maintaining the learning environment, therefore, requires teachers to focus on group processes. Jacob Kounin's landmark findings from the late 1960s on the management of classroom groups identified that the means by which teachers prevent problems from occurring in the first place differentiated them as more effective managers. Kounin, whose work was reaffirmed by Paul Gump, a noted ecological psychologist in Kansas in the 1980s, identified several strategies that teachers use to elicit high levels of work involvement and low levels of misbehaviour. These strategies are: (1) with-it-ness (communicating awareness of student behaviour), (2) overlapping (doing more than one thing at once), (3) smoothness and momentum (moving in and out of activities smoothly, with appropriately paced and sequenced instruction), and (4) group alerting (keeping all students attentive in a whole-group focus). These tools help teachers to maintain the flow of instruction. A significant stumbling block to the flow of instruction is in attention to transitions between activities, lessons, subjects, or class periods. It is here that teachers are likely to feel that they are less effective in maintaining the flow of instruction. Effective transitions are structured to move students from one activity to another, both physically and cognitively. The goal of smooth transitions is to ensure that all students have the materials and mind-sets they need for a new activity.


While effective managers work with groups of students, they also are attentive to students' individual behaviours and learning needs. Maintaining a learning environment requires teachers to actively monitor their students. According to classroom management research, active monitoring includes watching student behaviour closely, intervening to correct inappropriate behaviour before it escalates, dealing consistently with misbehaviour, and attending to student learning. In terms of monitoring both student behaviour and learning, effective managers regularly survey their class or group and watch for signs of student confusion or inattention. Maintaining effective management involves keeping an eye out for when students appear to be stuck, when they need help, when they need redirection, when they need correction, and when they need encouragement.


Teachers must also check for understanding, both publicly and privately. Maintaining a classroom management system requires the teacher to anticipate student actions and responses in order to be preventive rather than reactive. Excellent classroom managers mentally walk through classroom activities, anticipating areas where students are likely to have difficulty and planning to minimize confusion and maximize the likelihood of success.


Activities planned for these classrooms are paced to ensure that students have enough to do, that assignments reflect an awareness of student attention spans and interests, and that downtime is minimized between assignments or activities. The orientation of the classroom must be purposeful, with a variety of things to be done and ways to get those things done.


When Problems Occur

Though effective managers anticipate and monitor student behaviour and learning, misbehaviour and misunderstanding do occur. When inappropriate behaviour occurs, effective managers handle it promptly to keep it from continuing and spreading. Though teachers can handle most misbehaviour unobtrusively with techniques such as physical proximity or eye contact, more serious misbehaviour requires more direct intervention. The success of intervention depends on orderly structures having been created and implemented at the beginning of the school year.


Students sometimes have misunderstandings about academic content, or instruction effective managers look for ways to re-teach content and to improve the clarity of their communication. In research studies teachers in classrooms that run smoothly score high on measures of instructional clarity. That is, they describe their objectives clearly, give precise instructions for assignments, and respond to student questions with understandable explanations. Classroom communication, teachers' clarity of instructions and understanding of students' needs, is particularly important in maintaining the interconnectedness of management and instruction. This communication is central as teacher and students make visible all of the aspects of the classroom that build a community. Maintenance of a learning environment combines a teacher's careful attention to group dynamics, individual student needs, and clear communication.


In order to create and support a learning-centered environment where teaching for understanding and the construction of meaning are valued, students must be very comfortable and feel that their contributions are valued. In addition, students must value the contributions of others, value the diversity within the classroom, and give their best effort because they see it as the right thing to do or something that they want to do. The uniqueness of each classroom and the variety and complexity of tasks that teachers face make it impossible to prescribe specific techniques for every situation. In each classroom there will be a variety of skills, backgrounds, languages, and inclinations to cooperate. Teachers, particularly beginning teachers who may not have the repertoire of experiences and skills they need to be able to teach diverse classes, require administrative support to identify and nurture the interconnectedness of instruction and classroom management.


A close look at how class activities evolve reveals the need for a classroom management system that is visible, established, monitored, modified, refined, and reestablished. While teachers work with students who have different dispositions and abilities, they must be prepared to create, implement, and maintain an environment in which learning is the center.


Research-based programs have been developed that aid teachers in coming to an understanding of what it means to be an effective classroom manager. Evertson and Harris, based upon the research of Evertson and others, have created one such educational program aimed at the professional development of teachers. Their program encourages teachers to create a conceptual and practical understanding of management and organization through exploration of teachers' expectations, student accountability systems, and instructional strategies. Freiberg and colleagues have developed another such program, which also creates a preventive approach to classroom management through attention to school-wide perspectives and student responsibility. Both programs have demonstrated their effectiveness in improving teachers' practice and students' academic achievement and behaviour. Teachers empowered with an understanding of the complexity and multidimensionality of classroom management make a difference in the lives of their students.


Chapter 3 - Methodology


Design

The design used was the descriptive method in education which provided a conceptual frame-work for the researcher's study on the effect of classroom management and academic performance of students at a local primary school in Kingston Jamaica. Typically, survey gather data at a particular point in time with the intention of describing the nature of existing conditions or identifying standards against which existing conditions can be compared or determine the relationships that exist between classroom management and academic performance.


The researcher chose to use more than one method of data gathering techniques to collect the information need to complete this research: structured or semi-structured interviews were conducted and questionnaires.


Sample:

The researcher endeavours therefore to collect information from a smaller group of population in such a way that the knowledge gained representative of the total population under the study. The competent researcher starts with the total of 40 population and works it down to the sample size of 20, he determine the minimum number of respondents needed to conduct a successful survey. The research choose to use the systematic sampling method in that a simple random sampling. The sample size was also chosen because these persons; the teacher, students, parent and administration were present at the school and easily accessible.


Instruments:

An ideal questionnaire possesses the same properties as a good law: it is clear, unambiguous and uniformly workable. Its design must minimize potential errors from respondent and coders. Since people's participation in surveys is voluntary, a questionnaire has to help in engaging their interest, encouraging their co-operation, and eliciting answers as close as possible to the truth; with these in mind, that the researcher turn to the problem of designing a self-completion questionnaire. Using the research questions of interest the researcher in his survey and itemizing specific information requirements relating to them, the researcher's task now involves the structure of the questionnaire itself.


The purpose of the interview in the wider context of life is many and varied. It maybe used as a means of evaluating or assessing the person in some respect; for selecting or for effecting therapeutic change, as in the psychiatric interview; for testing or developing hypothesis; for gathering data, as in surveys or experimental situations; or for sampling respondents' opinions, as a doorstep interview.


The research wanting to gain a better insight into the hypothesis of the effects of classroom management and academic performance used the entire research question to formulate an interview schedule. The formal interview in which set questions were asked and the answers recorded on a standardized schedule; a less formal interview was also used by the researcher to ensure that the interviewee is free to modify the sequence of questions, change and wording this raised the conversational styles instead of having a set questionnaire.


Procedure:


Method of Data Analysis:


Limitations and Delimitations:

Research conducted on the impact of classroom management on academic performance is not without any limitation and delimitation. The research had several limitations and delimitations to contend. Accurate, up-to-date information was a factor that needs much consideration while the researcher was conducting the research. Many of the persons that did both the questionnaire as well as the interview were not up date with current trends in classroom management and how improper management of classroom can affect their student academic performance. Some person were unable to even give a working definition of the term classroom management. The researcher too decided that personal opinon affect the research.


Budgetary constraints was a limitation to the research as the because of the research financial constraints the cheapest methods of data gathering of questionnaires and interview was used.


Time constraints the researcher has a limited time frame in which to conduct the research hence the much detail on students academic performance if teacher were to practice these strategies that were recommended. There was also the need to conduct workshops and seminars for all the stakeholders involve to gain a better understanding of the effect that classroom management will have on academic performace.


Reliability of the data - the value of any research findings depend critically on the accuracy of the data collected. Data quality can be compromised via a number of potential routes, e.g., leading questions, unrepresentative samples, biased interviewers etc. Efforts to ensure that data is accurate, samples are representative and interviewers are objective will all add to the costs of the research but such costs are necessary if poor decisions and expensive mistakes are to be avoided.


Legal & ethical constraints - the Data Protection Act (1998) is a good example of a law that has a number of implications for the researcher's collection and holding personal data. For instance, researchers must ensure that the data they obtain is kept secure, is only used for lawful purposes and is only kept for as long as it is necessary. It must be made clear as to why data is being collected and the consent of participants must be obtained. In addition to this, there are a number of guidelines, laid down by the researcher to ensure that if the research was able to obtain the Grade Six Achievement test result then it would be handled with due-care; however the research was unable to obtain such a result for the local primary school in Kingston Jamaica.


Chapter 4 - Results and discussion

Nearly every teacher agrees that classroom management is an important aspect of successful teaching. Fewer agree on how to achieve it, and even fewer claims the concept of classroom management is operating in their own classrooms.The researcher embarked on an investigation into the effects of Classroom Management on academic achievement within a primary. The researcher was guided by three main research questions. One, What measures can teachers employ to improve academic success through classroom management? Two, What are the implications classroom management have on academic achievement? And Three, How can all the stakeholders collaborate to help improve classroom management? These research questions acted as a very effective guide for the researcher and helped the researcher to gather a large body of in depth data on the participants such as principal, vice principal, teachers for various grades senior and inexperience teacher, guidance counsellor and parents in the study.


The data collection method of interview was used to find the answers for the first and last research questions. The interview schedule of six (6) questions yielded substantial results. This was used with each participant; it allowed the researcher to interact individually with participants before distributing the questionnaires. The results confirms that poor classroom management will lead to poor academic performance. Further, the data collection method of observation and questionnaires were used to answer all the research questions .


Results of Interview

The interview was used to answer research questions What measures can teachers employ to improve academic success through classroom management? And How can all the stakeholders collaborate to help improve classroom management? The interview questions were read and summarised in order to present it in a concise manner.


Question 1- What is your take on classroom management. All of the seven (7) participants saw it has important, necessary and relevant teachers should be able to management and in so doing they will have better results from their students. It also helps with the day to day running of the class and gave structure to what will be taught. Maintaining good order in classrooms is one of the most difficult tasks facing young inexperienced teachers. The task has become more difficult over the past few decades as young people's attitudes to people in authority have changed dramatically. Some of the changes have led to greater self-confidence in students. Others--such as the acceptance of violence to achieve ends, attitudes to substance abuse and an increasing lack of respect for authority--have made classroom management and life in school generally more difficult, and more demanding, on those who are charged with maintaining a positive learning environment.


Question 2- What is your perception and relevance of classroom management? Four of the participants said that if there was no rules and management in the classroom then students would be able to do as they pleased which would yield to poor performance. They also went on to say that if classroom management is planned and enforce then learn will be wholesome and this sets the tone for a proper learning environment. The other three had nothing much to say on the issue they only said it was important and relevant in society today. In society today one of the main problems is indiscipline and the research strongly believe that if teacher spent more time setting the foundation for classroom management within their class from the beginning of the school year then there will certainly be fewer classroom management problems present and more time will be give to student to enable to perform between and be first-class citizen in society at large.


Question 3- How do you connect classroom management with student's academic performance? Six of the participants thought did no really linked classroom management with students' academic performance. They view it has the students having behavioural issues and this could discourage them in being able to get better performance from their students. J. Smith, personally communicated to me on June 11, 2009, said, “she knew classroom management existed but it was not being effective practiced”. For classroom management and student performance to improve the more needs to be done in creating this like having a print rich class, setting the rules the first day one meets the students, “telling what's expected”; using various teaching styles and diagnostic test for students' strengths and weaknesses and also allowing students to be responsible by giving the duties to perform within the classroom. The research is concerned that if persons are not link classroom management with academic performance the how are the students coping in a classroom at lacks the necessary structure ensure their success. The issue is not on the teachers themselves but on all the stakeholders working together to achieve a common goal and that is the success of their student and their future.


Question 4- What are the plans you have in place for managing your classroom? Most of the participants had plans but only three did actual use these plans. Four said they tried and soon stop as it was not work and the students were not being changed. Many said that the most effect way to manage their class was through using the “rod of correction”. M. Bennett, personal communicated to me on June 13, 2009 “that the administrative staff was not doing their job and there was no disciplinary committee establishes to discontinue the behavioural problems and the teachers have not been accountable to administration”. This question on accountability was now being raised by the interviewee but what can the teachers do if no one is accountable would a stakeholder want to use his or her resource to ensure good classroom management. The research would agree with the teacher that the stakeholder will need to collaborate to my classroom management and academic performance a success for all.


Question 5- What are some of the strategies promoted by the school to ensure good classroom management? A. Wisdom, (personal communication, June 19, 2009) “nothing was in place yet” but she believes that with more parental involvement then she would see the teachers having fewer problems with classroom management. All seven participant where not sure what strategies, where at the school to ensure good classroom management they believes that if the rule of the school was enforce it would help with discipline issues. If nothing is in place yet then the researcher is concern with hold the handle situation, what are the necessary take to address the issues of classroom management that they teacher face and where the stakeholder are read to collaborate for the empowerment of each student.


Question 6- Is there a collaborative approach that the school takes towards classroom management? All the participant said yes there is a collaborative effort being used. Most of the participants made mention of the guidance programme in the school that works closely with the community, police and other Non Government Organizations (NGO's) to ensure that the classroom in rid of disruptive students. There is counseling available to these students and Parenting sessions and seminars held. The researcher is seen some level of collaborate but what if more was being done by all the stakeholder not only with the guidance programme, the researcher wonder what the measure teacher would then have to employ to improve academic success through classroom management.


Classroom management and discipline, terms often used interchangeably, are not synonymous. Teachers were asked to define classroom management in one word have given the following responses: “discipline, control, and consequences”. Discipline was always the first word they chose. In the last few years, however, teachers have responded with the following words: organization, control, positive climate, and incentives. In effect, discipline has become a much smaller part of the term classroom management.


Classroom management is much more than any one of these words or the sum of all these words (Charles, 1992; Wolfgang, 1995).


Classroom management means how the teacher works, how the class works, how the teacher and students work together, and how teaching and learning happen. For students, classroom management means having some control in how the class operates and understanding clearly the way the teacher and students are to interact with each other. For both teachers and students, classroom management is not a condition but a process. It was with this that the researcher attempted to answer the second research question what are the implications classroom management have on academic achievement?, using a questionnaire of twenty (20) participants it yielded these results.


The first ten questions on the questionnaire were used to get the actual style the teachers and student preferred to use and the graph below represents the results. Most of the teachers were found to be indifferent while only a few chose Authoritarian, Authoritative and Laissez-faire.


The authoritarian teacher places firm limits and controls on the students. Student reacts to this teaching style: I don't really care for this teacher. He is really strict and doesn't seem to want to give his students a fair chance. He seems unfair, although that's just his way of getting his point across.


The authoritative teacher places limits and controls on the students but simultaneously encourages independence. A student reacts to this style: I like this teacher. She is fair and understands that students can't be perfect. She is the kind of teacher you can talk to without being put down or feeling embarrassed.


The laissez-faire teacher places few demand or controls on the students. Student reaction to this style: This is a pretty popular teacher. You don't have to be serious throughout the class. But sometimes things get out of control and we learn nothing at all.


The indifferent teacher is not very involved in the classroom. This teacher places few demands, if any, on the students and appears generally uninterested. The indifferent teacher just doesn't want to impose on the students. According to one student: This teacher can't control the class and we never learn anything in there. There is hardly ever homework and people rarely bring their books.


Question 11- asked the sex of the participants. The sex of the participant varied and it was mainly female teachers at the school the graph below represents the sex of the teachers graph 2 shows the results. The researcher is of the view that men seem to command more classroom management than female teacher would, it was a factor that consideration that if more male teacher where to be present in classroom then would the management of classroom yield outstanding performance.


Question 13 & 14 - asked the age number of years teaching of the participants. The age of the participants varied the graph represents the teachers' ages. This variation in age allowed the researcher to get a greater understanding of the experiences of the different age of the teachers. There was younger teacher that older teachers present at the school. The younger the teacher the less years of experience they had graph 3 give a pictorial representation. Graph 4 shows that even thought there are young teacher at the school many of these teachers had only on between 6-15 years of experience. Is it the age of the teacher or number of experience they have the researcher was concerned as often time we may have years and age all together but it will be year of the same mistake over and over again. The researcher is also of the view that the young the teacher is the better it can be for the students classroom management and academic performance and these persons sometime are “fresh” out of college and are full of life and enthusiasm and this is what some of the student need in order for them to gain a meaningful experience of school and to perform well. Having a balance staff is keep with years and age this will enhance the performance and a collaborative effect be taken towards classroom management and academic performance.


Question 15a & 15b - asked the participant about their classroom size and the number of students in the classroom. This allows the researcher to understand whether or not it was because the classroom is too large with a number of students that the participants are unable to be effect classroom managers and this would have lead to poor performance. The graph represents the class room size and number of students. Glass et al. (1982) maintained that the evidence suggested small classes were associated with higher levels of achievement across all grades at the primary level. The connection between improved learning and class size became particularly important when class sizes were reduced below 20 students (see Glass et al. 1982; Pritchard 1999) but look at graph 6 only two class at the school has between 15-25 student. What then can be done to ensure that our classroom are smaller and that our teacher can effect classroom management and better the academic performance. How can our stakeholders help with this issue.


Question 15 c - asked participants to tell how many remedial classes where in their grades. This allow for the researcher to have a better understand on whether or not the cognitive level of the student would allow the teacher to have a less effective classroom management which would lead to poor performance by these students. Only one remedial class was present in each grade and this suggested to the researcher that remedial problems have be a major cause for concern for poor and classroom management which lead to poor performance. If the students are slow then more work would need to be done by the teacher and a wider variety of strategies will have to be implemented. The research is also of the believe that even though there is one remedial class in each grade what is the likely-hood of having a male teacher; these student tend to need a firm hands and more time to be spend with them to help to gain outstanding performance.


Question 16- ask the participants to explain the factors that would contribute to the success of the student and of all the responses delivery method was found to be the most effective measure ensure excellent academic performance. The table below give frequency of each factor that will contribute to good classroom management and students academic performance. Method of delivery was found to be the most frequently used factor that contributes to student's success.


Most teachers have been trained to work in single-grade classrooms. Their knowledge of teaching method is based on whole-class instruction and small-group instruction (with groups often formed on the basis of ability or achievement level). When placed in a multigrade setting, teachers will need to use varied method of delivery to ensure their student performance. Each student is different and using a multisensory delivery method the researcher believes was an excellent way to enhance classroom management and academic performance.


Table 1

Factors contribute to the successful of Students

Very important

Important

Clarity of purpose

12

3

Group discussion

9

6

Good organization

15

1

Method of delivery

16

1

Access to recourses

13

2


Question 18-20 - ask the participants to share of tell how the school performance in all the nation level exams for grade one, four and six and most of the participant could not have answered as these grade seems to have been kept hidden and only those teachers who were closely associated with the students or the grade in particular that did the examination was able to give a response. This the researcher believe was a very serious implication of classroom management and academic performance, if information is withheld from the stakeholders then they, themselves will be unable to identify the various changes that will need to take place in order for students to enhance their classroom management and academic performance. The researcher is also of the view that not much collaboration and networking take place at the local primary school and this will set the trend for the students themselves and how involve the will be in activities for their own personal development.


Question 21 - asked the participants to state the type of classroom management training that they have receive and the Table 2 below shows. There needed to be much more training been done by teacher, the mentoring, observation and statutory in school development day is not enough. There is diversity happening in the education system and if the teachers at this primary school are not prepare to take of the various resource that are available to make them more complete in their field of work the we will see little or no improvement in the student academic performance as our teacher would not have been competent to take on the various challenges that come with classroom management.


Table 2

Type of classroom management training

Yes     

No

Statutory in school development day               

8

4

Workshop 

1

16

Mentoring   

5

12

Research /Enquiry                                            

2

15

Coaching  

5

12

Networking  

2

15

Observation of colleagues                               

10

7

Sharing best practices                                      

1

16


Question 22- asked about the strategies that the teachers found to be most effective in managing their classrooms and the table below show that teachers have tried various strategies with their individual class but often time this down not yield better academic performance. The researcher is of the view that the main reason for teacher not being able to effective manage their classroom with the strategies is consistency; students need to be constantly reminded of the strategies that the teacher uses. The teachers themselves also need to do an evaluation of work strategies work best with a particular student. Even thought strategies are easy to implement it takes a lot of consistency on the part of all the stakeholders to collaborate and to effect the change that will cause the student to repeat outstanding academic performance.


Strategies found to be most effective in managing in classroom

Preventive 

YES

NO

14

4

Setting the rules

withitness

Overlapping

12

1

Technical Teaching Skills

YES

NO

15

3

Verbal Skills      

Set Induction 

Voice Control 

Varying Instructional Method

3

6

9

Nonverbal Skills 

Time on Task 

Eye Contact

3

9

Solving Immediate Problems 

YES

NO

15

3

Using Silence

Proximity Control 

Teacher-Student Conferences

1

3

11

Punishment and Discipline

YES

NO

no answer

13

5

Time Out 

Respond Out

11

2

Peer Relations

YES

NO

no answer

9

Rejection by Peers 

Peer Prejudies 

Peer Tutoring

1

1

7

Contingency Contracting

YES

NO

no answer

3

2

12

Example of a Contingency Contracting

Example of Home Contract

2

1


Table 3 Strategies found to be most effective in managing in classroom


Question 24-25- asked if the teachers where satisfied with level of parental support and with administration and classroom management and most teacher where satisfied. The graph below shows this. The researcher strongly recommend that more need to be down to allow the teacher to be satisfied with their classroom and their managements as too often teacher are being blamed for the students poor performance when administration has not taken the time to implement any new strategies. The researcher based on previous finding suggest that collaboration is a critical issue that is facing out teacher and not much is being done by all the stakeholders only a few stakeholders are working together to achieve a common goal.


Question 26- asked to gain a better understanding of what teachers understood about classroom management. Most teacher thought of it as discipline and punishment and having control over the classroom, but the researcher wants teacher to know that classroom management is creating an atmosphere where and ultimate learning experience can take place. For this to happen, students needs to feel comfortable to express and opinion and take a risk; he or she need to know that mistakes will happen and that it is all right. We can all learn from our mistakes, students needs to be surrounded with books as the teacher hope to instill that love of reading in each student. The teachers classroom is one where a students wants to learn, where the teacher can peak his or her curiosity about everything around her/him. Each year as the teacher try to facilitate all of this, it happens in such different ways, depending on the group of students combined together; that is what makes teaching so exciting and also such a challenge and it is will this in mind that teacher will reap outstanding performance in this school.


Chapter 5 - Conclusion and Recommendations

According to specialists in the field of education, school and classroom management aims at encouraging and establishing student self-control through a process of promoting positive student achievement and behaviour. Thus academic achievement, teacher efficacy, and teacher and student behaviour are directly linked with the concept of school and classroom management.


Teachers play various roles in a typical classroom, but surely one of the most important is that of classroom manager. Effective teaching and learning cannot take place in a poorly managed classroom. If students are disorderly and disrespectful, and no apparent rules and procedures guide behaviour, chaos becomes the norm. In these situations, both teachers and students suffer. Teachers struggle to teach, and students most likely learn much less than they should. In contrast, well-managed classrooms provide an environment in which teaching and learning can flourish. But a well-managed classroom does not just appear out of nowhere. It takes a good deal of effort to create—and the person who is most responsible for creating it is the teacher.


We live in an era when research tells us that the teacher is probably the single most important factor affecting student achievement—at least the single most important factor that we can do much about. To illustrate, An investigation into the effects of Classroom Management on academic achievement within a primary school located in Kingston Jamaica” noted the following:


The results of this study has document that the most important factor affecting student learning is the teacher. In addition, the results show wide variation in effectiveness among teachers. The immediate and clear implication of this finding is that seemingly more can be done to improve education by improving the effectiveness of teachers than by any other single factor.


The researcher having done the research is recommending that if the following


Accuse to information should be available to all the staff present at the school especially, to those teacher who do not teach grades that national examination are administered.


Teachers need to be up-to-date with current trends in the education system by all the stakeholder, hence workshops, seminars, constant evaluation needs to be done by the stakeholders to chart their progress and for them not only to way until appraisal time to start making the necessary improvement.


There needs to be a more collaboration among all the stakeholder and inconsistency was a critical concern when the question of what strategies was implemented by the school to enhance academic and classroom management. It also proved that the research question on how all the stakeholder collaborated to improve classroom management was relevant and more work need to be done.


It is the view also of the researcher that with the presence of more male teachers, this will improve the classroom management and male teacher are need mainly in the remedial grades. The remedial grade base on the research can accommodate two teachers. It is recommended that for all teachers to perform better and achieve academic success then the class size needs to reduce to at least 25 students.


The researcher is also recommending that a multisensory approach to learning be taken into consideration by the stakeholder. This means that careful and proper plan by the teachers is done to cater to all the students that are within her classroom and this will also boast the academic performance of the students and enhance the management skills of the teacher.


Clearly, individual classroom teachers can have a major impact on student achievement. Of the three roles of the classroom teacher—making choices about instructional strategies, designing classroom curriculum, and employing classroom management techniques—classroom management is arguably the foundation.


APPENDICES


Interview Schedule

  1. What is your take on classroom management?

  2. What is your perception and relevance of classroom management?

  3. How do you connect classroom management with student's academic performance?

  4. What are the plans you have in place for managing your classroom?

  5. What are some of the strategies promoted by the school to ensure good classroom management?

  6. Is there a collaborative approach that the school takes towards classroom management?

Reference