Teach English in Shanghe Zhen - Huai'an Shi

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A lot of people think classroom management is when you are yelling at a student and telling them what to do, but this is not so. think back to your classrooms that might have looked seamless, but really the teacher had put in a lot of structure to make the day seem to flow so effortlessly. The definition of classroom management Classroom management is a well-prepared and well-planned lesson that engages students at their level.All the rest are tricks and tools to get to that level in the classroom. The Method of Classroom Management As a teacher you simply can’t account for every variable but there are general rules which can be implemented to improve your chances of regular success and a functioning classroom environment.Here are some useful tips and strategies to help us progress into competent classroom orchestrators: 1.The single best way to improve behavior in a classroom is planning an engaging and well thought-out lesson plan. If you have videos, songs, and games in a lesson that smoothly flows from one activity to the next, explained in a way that the goals of the games and the English being taught is clear, then you will have won 75% of the battle. The biggest battle you will need to fight is not against naughty children, but against their boredom. Improving this comes with experience both of teaching and of your class; knowing what kinds of games your class likes and what activities they enjoy will help you tailor lessons to keep your students' eyes on you and not causing mischief with their friends. 2.Strong personal relationships are the backbone of a well-run classroom. New teachers start getting to know your students as soon as you first set foot in the classroom. “Get to know all the children’s names in your classroom,” “When you know a student’s name that’s power. Get down on their level and talk to them. If they don’t speak your language that’s ok – joke, smile, play games – do something to get down on their level and interact with them. If you have a personal relationship formed, there’s no trading that for anything.” Building relationships with your students will not only help you build rapport, it will also help you learn more deeply about the culture around you. A knowledge of the local culture will also be fundamental in helping you set an appropriate tone and react to situations that come down the line in your classroom. 3.Teaching skill A.Use a normal, natural voice Are you teaching in your normal voice? Every teacher can remember this from the first year in the classroom: spending those first months talking at an above-normal range until one day, you lose your voice. Raising our voice to get students' attention is not the best approach, and the stress it causes and the vibe it puts in the room just isn't worth it. The students will mirror your voice level, so avoid using that semi-shouting voice. If we want kids to talk at a normal, pleasant volume, we must do the same. You want toalso differentiate your tone. If you are asking students to put away their notebooks and get into their groups, be sure to use a declarative, matter-of-facttone. If you are asking a question about a character in a short story, or about contributions made by the Roman Empire, use an inviting, conversational tone. B. Speak only when students are quiet and ready This golden nugget was given to me by a 20-year veteran. She told me that teachers should just wait and then wait some more until all students were quiet. She triedit; I fought the temptation to talk. Sometimes she'd wait much longer than she thought she could hold out for. Slowly but surely, the students would cue eachother: "sshh, she's trying to tell us something," "come on, stoptalking," and "hey guys, be quiet." C. Use hand signals and other non-verbal communication Holding one hand in the air, and making eye contact with students is a great way to quiet the class and get their attention on you. It takes awhile for students to get used to this as a routine, but it works wonderfully. Have them raise their hand along with you until all are up. Then lower yours and talk. Flicking the lights off and on once to get the attention is an oldie but goodie. It couldalso be something you do routinely to let them know they have three minutes to finish an assignment or clean up, etc. With younger students, try clapping your hands three times and teaching the children to quickly clap back twice. This is a fun and active way to get their attention and all eyes on you. 4.Use Incentives and Reward Systems Specific praise can be one of the most powerful tools in effective classroom management. “Praise your kids by name and be specific,” says Dr. Christenson. “Empty praise means nothing. If you give them specific praise you will they will feel really good about themselves.” An example of a positive statement is: "John, I love the way you are listening to me and you are sitting on your bottom with your hands in your lap." Using statements such as the one above will reinforce positive behavior and re-teach the rest of the class what types of behaviors to exhibit. You can also think of a positive reward system, and use something small such as stickers that kids can work towards with a point system. “If you only rely on incentives you will never get your students respect,” says Dr. Christenson. “This doesn’t mean you can’t use incentives at all, but don’t start with that.” As far as discipline goes, this should be a last resort only and Dr. Christenson recommends you follow the advice of local teachers before taking any action. 5.Address behavior issues quickly and wisely Be sure to address an issue between you and a student or between two students as quickly as possible. Bad feelings -- on your part or the students -- can so quickly grow from molehills into mountains. Now, for handling those conflicts wisely, you and the student should step away from the other students, just in the doorway of the classroom perhaps. Wait until after instruction if possible, avoiding interruption of the lesson. Ask naive questions such as, "How might I help you?" Don't accuse the child of anything. Act as if you do care, even if you have the opposite feeling at that moment. The student will usually become disarmed because she might be expectingyou to be angry and confrontational. And, if youmust address bad behavior during your instruction, always take a positive approach. Say, "It looks like you have a question" rather than,"Why are you off task and talking?" 6.Positive and Negative Feedback to Parents and Teaching Assistants.Sometimes the help of parents can be invoked if necessary by offering constructive feedback about their children. If parents are involved, try to insist the problem isn’t insurmountable and will just require a small amount of modifying behaviour. If you make an enemy of the parents it can make a teacher’s job doubly difficult.  7.Ask Experienced Teachers for Help and Suggestions Don't be afraid to ask those more experienced than you for guidance. Every teacher will need to heed some advice. You cannot replicate the exact teaching style and lesson content of another teacher but you can take useful parts out of their lessons and introduce them into yours. Many longterm teachers have an array of useful tricks to help control a classroom. In summary,the important thing I found as a new teacher was this: don't be afraid to try something new if it's not working. Try a mix of carrots and sticks until you find a method for each class that encourages them to have fun within the context of a learning environment. For new teachers, the biggest thing I can recommend is keep at it, talk to other teachers, and talk with your students until you can find something that works for you and that class. You may be running different management systems in different classes, but if it works, it works, and teaching them will become all the easier. Don't be afraid to get creative, oftentimes we do not have classic methods of punishment like homework at our disposal, so find other things to offer to get their good behavior or figure out what they enjoy in your class and threaten to withhold it as a punishment. If you take every class as a possible learning opportunity for yourself and adapt your policies to elicit good behavior, then in no time you will begin to feel in control of your class, and though you'll never be perfect, with practice, maybe, you can get close.