Classroom Behavior Management Plan
By James Vincent
Classroom Behavioral Management
1:00 p.m. Period
Last Updated: November 20, 2006
My Classroom Management Plan (CMP) will assist me in the management of classroom conduct and discipline. Designed to offer several strategies in classroom behavioral management, the CMP will also serve as a resource of theories, programs and professional development plans. The focus and drive of this particular CMP is based upon research, experience in the field, as well as, personal thought and philosophy.
PHILOSOPHY OF CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT
Every child is special. No matter the race, gender, ethnicity, religious preference, socioeconomic status or intellectual ability, it is my responsibility as an educator to teach every child with passion, dedication and determination. The children who walk through my classroom door are deserving of the best education possible, an environment which is learner-friendly and supportive, and the skills and/or tools of succeeding not only through life but beyond society's expectations and drawbacks.
To accomplish my goal of providing every child with each of these deserving gifts, I will use a variety of teaching strategies, behavior management methods borrowed and adapted from various theorist including William Glasser, Fred Jones, Linda Albert and Barbara Coloroso. I will use various tools such as lesson plans, units, and assessments to maintain a productive, well-rounded, and successful classroom. Students will feel supported, and will learn to accept consequences (positive and negative) for their actions which, in the future, will lead to the understanding of civil responsibilities, duties and the importance of living together in a community in harmony and respect.
TOP TEN BELIEFS AND PRACTICES
Before developing an effective curriculum plan, several factors must first be considered. Students’ learning styles, non-academic interests, home-life, parental support and future goals must be explored and well thought-out during the creation of a class curriculum. Each of these factors—and more—affect the ways in which students learn, are motivated, and perceive the world they live in. Theorist William Glasser advocated for the importance of a useful and relative curriculum, focusing his idea that useful and relevant activities will attract the interest and motivation of students; creating an opportunity for students to become actively involved, take pride in meaningful accomplishments, and enjoy learning. As an educator, I will have the responsibility of influencing the lives of my students by providing a unique and well-rounded curriculum.
Leading by example is an important modeling technique for managing a classroom. William Glasser emphasized the importance of teaching taking a leading approach to classroom management. When a teacher models appropriate behavior, the students become immersed in various ways for handle an overwhelming number of situations. Teachers are the forefront leaders for guiding the students through positive and negative experiences. By providing students with a stimulating learning environment, teachers in fact begin to encourage the students to confront issues and topics in a comfortable and safe manner.
Glasser also believed that evidence of a quality classroom reflected upon the teacher’s ability to meet the needs of his/her students. Students, like every individual, have needs; some personal, others public, and many humanistic in nature. Basic humanistic needs include food, water, shelter and protection; each essential for survival. Public needs may include the use of a bathroom facility, a desk, school supplies and other materialistic commodities. Personal needs may vary from student to student, but generally include the sense of power, fun, belonging, and freedom. Every need may be different, but each need is important for the successful development of the student. Unwanted or undesired behaviors are signs that one or more of a student’s needs are not being met, known or unknown to either the student or the teacher. Identifying and meeting the appropriate needs of the students can be sometimes met by simply taking the time to listen to the child. Reaching an agreement of actions can be sometimes useful for older students.
Teachers and students must be willing to work together in order to resolve conflicts and creating solutions for various situations. A teacher is charged with the task of providing opportunities for students to feel empowered and responsible for making decisions. Developing a successful cooperative relationship is elemental for managing discipline in the classroom. In order to create a meaningful and productive relationship, the teacher must take an interest in the student’s life, education, and future goals. The student in turn must rely on trust and intuition in order for the two to bond and establish a mutual form of trust and openness.
Management of classroom behaviors can be guided through a series of effective routines, guidance strategies, and a firm, solid structure of expectations and consequences. Theorist Fred Jones identifies an effective classroom environment as a tool which focuses on strong structure and consistent routines, while encouraging good behavior from the students. To create such a classroom, the teacher must be prepared to teach in a manner that grabs the students’ attentions and promotes participation as individuals as well as a group. Creating a basis of procedure and routine allows limited room for spontaneity or mischief. Reaching the base of the students’ interests, the teacher can begin to guide the students more independently as the process progresses.
In addition to providing the students with structure and routine, the teacher can take action on creating or developing measures that will prevent the existence of unwanted or undesired behaviors. This can be done by fostering the students’ attentions through engagement. According to Jones, if the students are engaged and interested in the present tasks then unwanted behaviors are minimal. Many such behaviors occur when the students are bored, frustrated, or unhappy. There are several factors that would contribute to these emotions; family, self-perception, prior negative experiences with school, hunger, and so on. As the educator, I must be aware of my students’ needs and internal/external contributing factors. I must make myself aware of such issues that could potentially have a negative effect on my students, and I must be proactive to the situations. Being proactive and anticipating potential situations can become effective tools for engaging students and preventing unwanted or undesired behaviors.
Close cooperation between students and teachers can be effective in several ways. Linda Albert believes that expectations and consequences are best developed by a cooperation of teacher and student input. By students and teachers connecting with each other, the chances of negative behaviors is minimized. Albert believes a code of conduct should be created in order for students to collectively agree on appropriate and inappropriate behaviors. Instead of creating classroom rules, the teacher works with the students to create a set of expectations and consequences they can all live by. Throughout the process, the students are guided by the teacher to develop their own expectations. These expectations are created by the students, not forced upon them by the teacher. Although the teacher takes no direct action in creating the code of conduct, it is important that the students know the consequences decided upon will be enforced and everyone will be held accountable.
Education is strongly rooted in a network of individuals dedicated to bettering the education of children across the globe. Though several roles and responsibilities are formulated through the process of improving education, the role of the parent remains a constant necessity in profession. It is through the parents that educators are enabled to reach students needs outside the classroom. Parents are excellent sources of power and motivation; dedicated to the success of their student’s education. In order to keep open communications with parents, educators must provide ample opportunities for parents to take an active role in their child’s education. Teachers and parents must reach an understanding that the students’ educations are investments towards the future; each assuming responsibility to contribute, to foster, and to support the development and maturation of quality education.
When mutual grounds of trust have been established, the development of positive relationships between the teacher, students, and parents will begin to improve the perspectives of education and the environments in which learning takes place. Through cooperation and contribution from all parties involved, a well-managed classroom will become easier to ascertain. Students will begin to recognize the support and understanding available to them, and will begin to feel more positive in regards to their experiences with school. When parents, teachers and students recognize the existence of mutual concerns and interests for the best education possible, only then will an effective collaboration truly be present and able to maintain a well-managed classroom.
Not only is trust an issue, but maintaining the bond of mutual respect is vital to developing a well-managed classroom as well. If either party (educators or parents) fail to develop a bond of respect for the other, then the collaboration of efforts is doomed to fail. Only when all parties involved put aside their differences and form a cohesive bond of understanding, knowledge and respect, can the process move forward to improving the quality of education. Students can sense when tensions are high between adults. Adults tend to lose the ability to hide their anger or frustration. As educators and parents, we must act on our students’ behalf, but not at their expense. Part of building a quality collaborative group is remaining honest and open. It is expected that at one point in time parents and educators will disagree on a course of action for the students. This is normal and quite healthy for the further development of the relationship. When situations arise in which parents and educators may disagree, it is important the adults remain open-minded, willing to hear the other individual’s point of view, and accepting to reach a compromise or agreement benefiting the best interest of the student. Pressure should not be placed solely on the child; neither should the child be completely removed for the situation. The basis of a collaboration or coalition is for individuals with various ideas, methodologies, and interests to come together to each contribute to the betterment of the group as a whole. The betterment of a child’s education is only fulfilled through the development of trust, collaboration, and respect.
PROCEDURES AND ROUTINES
When students arrive in my classroom, the following procedures are expected to be completed:
Students will have the opportunity to receive a daily “Classroom Task”. Here is a brief list of some tasks the student’s may be able to complete:
· Cleaning the chalkboards
· Emptying the trash
· Feeding Squirt, the class turtle
· Tank maintenance
· Flag raising/removal
Tasks will be rotated every week. Students who chose to partake in the “Classroom Task” program will earn “Vince-Cents”, redeemable for future purchases at Mr. Vincent’s Market-Day Extravaganza! This program is designed to motivate students to assume classroom responsibilities, to educate students on the importance and benefits of saving money, as well as, to provide the students with well-earned affirmations for positive behaviors in the classrooms.
Students are expected to participate in daily discussions and activities, complete assignments required or assigned by the teacher. Students will complete tests over selected material and information. Students will complete various classroom group projects as well as several smaller individual assignments. These smaller assignments are given throughout the year by the teacher, and are used to enhance the students’ content knowledge. Students will have various opportunities for gaining extra credit points.
GAINING CLASS ATTENTION
Throughout the school day, I may need to provide the students with important instructions. Some instructions may require the use of direct verbal communication, while others may simply require non-verbal visual communication. Below are a few strategies I intend to use to manage students’ attention.
· When in need of gaining the entire class’ attention, I will use one of two methods: Clap or Raise.
· Clap: I will state rather softly, “If you hear my voice clap once. If you hear my voice clap twice. If you hear my voice put your hand on your head. If you hear my voice put your hand on your nose. If you hear my voice put your finger on your mouth”.
· Raise: I will simply raise my hand, signaling to the students I need their ears open and their mouths closed. During the training phase, I may need to verbally state, “When the hand goes up, the mouth goes shut”.
· To inform students a task or lesson is near to ending, I will flick the room lights twice while stating, “One [or two] more minutes with this activity. We will soon be moving on to our next lesson”.
Students are expected to attend school each day. Students are expected to assume responsibility for ensuring their Attendance Stick is removed from the Absent jar and placed in the Present jar. The classroom teacher will review the jars to ensure the proper sticks have been moved. If a student forgets to switch their stick the teacher will make a reference to that particular student, but it is the student’s responsibility to fix the mistake. Attendance will be sent to the Main Office.
Throughout the day, the teacher will give students various worksheets and homework assignments. After each lesson, the students will place their homework into their designated mailbox, located at the back of the room. At the end of the day, when the students are called to retrieve their homework, they will also remove their jackets, coats, book-bags, or lunchboxes from their cubbies and to return to their seat to quietly await dismissal via the intercom.
IMPLEMENTATION OF CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT PRACTICES
CLASSROOM EXPECTATIONS AND CONSEQUENCES
I have 5 General Expectations for my classroom:
· Listen attentively and follow directions.
· Ask for permission.
· Be respectful of personal space and property.
· Participate in the group as well as individually.
· HAVE FUN!
These will be shared with my students on the first day of school. I will use that time to allow my students to create their own classroom expectations, stemming off of my general list. We will use this time to explore the understanding of each expectation, as well as, to create a list of consequences in case an expectation is violated or disregarded. This method of using expectations and consequences is intended for the purpose of minimizing teacher-directed discipline and fostering student-driven motivation, choice, and discipline. The teacher will continue to convey order in the classroom, but will provide students with the skills and opportunities for maintaining self-classroom behavior management and discipline.
STRATEGIES FOR INSTRUCTION
Identifying students’ learning styles is essential to providing quality education. When developing a classroom curriculum, the teacher must get to know each student; learning the students’ interests, identifying the various learning styles, and recognizing or researching methods to enhance the learning environment as well as the content material. Providing students with knowledge should be our goal as educators, but it shouldn’t end there. We should strive to not only provide knowledge, but to acquire the materials and tools needed to teach our students and render those tools into our students’ hands. Allow our students to explore with manipulative objects and hands-on tools for learning. We need to also provide alternative educational experiences for our students. Due to the overwhelming variety of learning styles, developmental levels and external interests, our students must be equip to survive basic living situations. Providing alternative learning opportunities, such as trips to the local grocery store, will not only engage our students in something new, but we will be teaching our students the fundamental and basic skills to survive and succeed in life.
While developing my classroom management plan, I have taken special consideration in recognizing my role as an educator in the profession of Elementary Education. I have taken into account the external factors that will contribute to the influence of my students’ perspectives on education and learning. And I have acknowledged the need for engagement, proximity, structure, support, routine, expectations, consequences and motivation, while incorporating the importance of parental involvement, trust, honesty and a bond of student-parent-teacher respect. It is my goal that by the end of the year students will assume the responsibility needed for their actions; replacing a destructive action with a constructive action as a natural consequence.
SAMPLE PARENT LETTER
Greetings Students and Parents!
Starting August 14th, you willing be embarking on an exciting journey; a journey that will lead you to Spartan Elementary School, Room 111, my classroom! Through several forms of instruction, I am committed to educating, engaging, and challenging you who are willing and eager to learn!
You will be pleased to hear that in my class, there are no rules; only expectations. My classroom expectations are clear, simple, and easy to follow:
I plan to use a positive attitude as well as various teaching techniques to meet your needs. I am hoping to create and maintain an open-door policy of communication for parents and students. If you have any questions before the first day of school, I encourage you to give me a call at home (812.346.7632) or on my cell phone (502.403.7320).
Make this year count! Come join the fun and see what the party is all about!
Mr. James Vincent, 5th Grade
Spartan Elementary School
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This site was created by James R. Vincent as a tribute to the importance of education, and as a written testimonial of the power one person can have on another.
This site was last updated 12/04/06