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Nowadays, lot of teachers in our country are facing problem in managing their classrooms in schools. Perhaps the single most important aspect of teaching is classroom management. The students are described to be different and some of them tend to act superior to the school management system, even to the teachers. They show less respect to the teachers, refuse to get involve in the learning sessions and even misbehaving in the schools. In order to make sure the learning environment go well, the teachers have to come up with certain guidelines in managing their classrooms. Classroom management is a term used by teachers to describe the process of ensuring that classroom lessons run smoothly despite disruptive behavior by students. The term also implies for the prevention of disruptive behavior. It is possibly the most difficult aspect of teaching for many teachers, indeed for some who experiencing these kind of problems already leave the teaching profession altogether. This problem is not only faced by our local teaches but it is believed to be happening world wide. In the year of 1981, the US National Educational Association reported that 36% of teachers said they would probably not go into teaching if they had to decide again. A major reason was “negative student attitudes and discipline”.(Wolfgang and Glickman).
According to Moskowitz & Hayman (1976), once a teacher loses control of their classroom, it becomes increasingly more difficult for them to regain that control. Also, a research from Berliner (1988) and Brophy & Good (1986) shows that the time that teacher has to take to correct misbehavior caused by poor classroom management skills results in a lower rate of academic engagement in the classroom. From the student’s perspective, effective classroom management involves clear communication of behavioral and academic expectations, as well as a cooperative learning environment (Allen 1986).
Classroom management is related to issues of motivation, discipline and respect. Many teachers establish rules and procedures at the beginning of the school year in order to control the students. According to Gootman (2008), rules give students concrete direction to ensure that our expectation becomes a reality. They also try to be consistent in enforcing these rules and procedures. Many would also argue for positive consequences when rules are followed, and negative consequences when rules are broken. Sometimes, this application is working in order to manage the classroom effectively but at the same time, failure also happens.
Classroom Management and Discipline
Classroom management is the reflection of the learning environment of a group of individuals within a classroom setting. A teacher’s classroom-management system communicates information about the teacher’s beliefs on content and the learning process. It also represents the kinds of instruction that will take place in a particular classroom. A classroom in which the teacher is completely responsible to guide the students’ actions by encouraging ands teaching them to be responsible for their own behaviors. The nature of classroom management and classroom instruction is especially easy to be seen and understood from a student perspective. Students have at least two cognitive demands on them at all times: academic task demands which is understanding and working with conten and also social task demands by interacting with others concerning that content. This means that students must try to understand the content and find appropriate and effective ways to participate in order to demonstrate that understanding to the teacher and the whole class. The teacher must facilitate the learning of these academic and social tasks. Therefore, the students’ perspective on the need to be successful, management and instruction cannot be separated.
A teacher needs to cater all actions in order 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, developing rules, and communicating those rules to the students. These are all aspects of classroom management:
Creating a Learning Environment
Creating and implementing a learning environment means careful planning for the start of the school year. The learning environment must be supervised in both physical space and cognitive space. The physical space of the classroom is managed as the teacher prepares the classroom for the students. These questions should be entertained by the teachers ‘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?’. It helps a lot.Teachers must also consider the cognitive space necessary for a learning environment. Effective teachers create and implement classroom management practices that cultivate effective classroom environment for their students.
The establishment of the teachers’ expectations should be expressed through rules and procedures. Rules indicate the expectations for behavior in the classroom, and procedures have to do with how things get done. Rules can be developed with the students’ helps in the classroom. The teacher must have the knowledge on which rules and procedures should be used for different environment. It is proven by certain researchers that students who demonstrates high task engagement and academic achievement implement a systematic approach toward classroom management at the beginning of the school year by the teachers. Therefore, one of the critical aspects of managing classrooms effectively, or managing classrooms in ways to enhance student learning, is setting expectations.
An essential part of organizing the classroom is to 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 which are value and effort. To be motivated, students must see the outcomes of the work that they are doing and the work others do. Effort ties the time, energy, and creativity a student uses to develop the the works hold. Teachers also can encourage the students by praising them verbally. It can motivates them to learn more.
Maintaining a Learning Environment
Classroom management also involves maintaining the learning environment through decision-making concerning students and the classroom. Maintaining a learning environment requires teachers to actively monitor their students. Active monitoring includes watching student behavior closely, correcting inappropriate behavior before it’s getting worse, dealing consistently with misbehavior, and attending to student learning. In terms of monitoring both student behavior and learning, effective teachers 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 have problems in any field while learning.
When Problems Occur
Though effective teachers anticipate and monitor students’ behavior and learning, misbehavior and misunderstanding do occur. When inappropriate behavior occurs, they have to handle it promptly to keep it from continuing and spreading. Depending on the seriousness of the missbehaviors, teachers have to use different techniques to cater them. When students have problem academically, the teachers have to make sure the objectives are clearly given, precise instructions for assignments, and appropriate responds to students’ questions.
In order to create and support a learning-centered environment, students must be very comfortable and feel that their contributions are valued. In addition, students must know how to 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. In each classroom there will be a variety of skills, backgrounds, languages, and levels of cooperation. Teachers need to have experiences and skills to teach diverse classes, along with the administrative support in schools.
There are many philosophies and styles of discipline applied by different teachers in the whole wide world. It can be hard to decide what works best for a particular teacher. What works for one teacher may not work for another. The best thing a teacher can do is to pick one that he/she think will be successful and make adjustments later if they face problems. Following are some of the most common discipline methods can be used by teachers in classroom:
Assertive Discipline. It was created by Lee Canter. Canter believes that if you “catch” a student being good by recognizing them when they behave, they will work harder at behaving. He also believes that there should be consistent consequences of breaking the rules that are very clear. During early of the class sessions to begin, the teacher comes up with no more than five rules for the classroom. Each time a rule is broken, a consequence is given. If the misbehavior continues, the consequences get more severe every time. At the same time, students are rewarded for behaving properly. This can range from giving them verbal praises or even things such as sweets or foods.
A Primer on Classroom Discipline- An article on this manual has been published by Thomas R. McDaniel. There are eleven techniques that are explained that help you achieve control. The methods are Focusing, Direct Instruction, Monitoring, Modeling, Non-Verbal Cuing, Environmental Control, Low-Profile Intervention, Assertive Discipline, Assertive I-Messages, Humanistic I-Messages, and Positive Discipline.
Discipline With Dignity – This controversial discipline program, created by Richard L. Curwin and Allen N. Mendler, is based on the premise that students are treated with dignity at all times. It is created to build self-esteem and encourage responsible behavior. Typically a contract is created by both the student and the teacher. The contract includes prevention, “action dimension,” and resolution. The teachers’ rules must make sense and be fair. At the same time, prevention is also done by the teachers with preplanning to eliminate possible areas of problems. Most important thing is to make sure students are aware of what is expected from them. The action consists of record keeping and classroom management. Finally the resolution component for the teachers is dealing with the continual rule breaker in the classrooms. But, teachers have to remember that discipline should not interfere with motivation and therefore, the students should be taught responsibility rather than being obedience for their own actions in the classrooms.
There are some dicline with this method. It is believed that teacher is ought to protect student dignity and the fact there is no punishment. Students frequently select their own consequences rather than the teachers who decide. Teacher responses to severe discipline problems is unusual. Many believe that this should be the last resort for teachers to be used in classrooms when others have failed.
Reality Therapy (RT)- This program was created by William Glasser. The emphasis of this program is to help students connect behavior with consequence. This is done with class meetings, clear rules, and contracts. This also includes Positive Approach to Discipline (PAD), which is based on Reality Therapy.
In conclusion, sometimes even teachers can actually make the problems occur in classrooms become worse, not the students. Therefore, it is important to consider some of the basic mistakes commonly made when implementing classroom behavior management strategies. For example, a common mistake made by teachers is to define the problem behavior by how it looks without considering its function. Interventions are more likely to be effective when they individually commit one of the problem behavior. Two students with similar looking misbehavior may require entirely different intervention strategies if the behaviors are serving different functions. Another common mistake is for the teacher to become deeply frustrated and feeling negative when an approach is not working towards the students. The teacher may raise his or her voice or increase the level of punishment in an effort to make the approach work. This type of interaction may impair the teacher-student relationship. Instead of allowing this to happen, it is often better to simply try a new approach.
To avoid this, teachers should have an effective communication with the students. Communication is the key point here and with good approach and mentality, the students’ problem behaviors can be catered. By times, the classroom environment can be improved all together, for both teachers and students.
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