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When teachers cannot control their classroom, majority of teachers raise their voice and lose their temper. Sometimes they may say things that they later regret. Moreover, the more the classroom gets out of hand, teachers tend to take further action. For example, often times we see in a middle school class, teachers “punish” the entire class by giving them extra packets of homework. In other cases, specific students are put on the spotlight and are brought to detention for causing disruptions in a classroom. What does it mean to punish first and foremost. In the Merriam-Webster dictionary, to punish is defined as: 1. to impose a penalty on for a fault, offense, or violation 2. to inflict a penalty for the commission of (an offense) in retribution or retaliation 3. to deal with roughly or harshly 4. To inflict injury on Punishment clearly has a negative and scary connotation. It is not the correct word to describe the response to which a teacher should take in response to bad behavior. Moreover, the biggest problem is that teachers do not know what is the underlying cause of the so-called bad behavior and often times teachers do not seek the underlying cause. Teachers may also not know how to deal with the bad behavior and immediately lose their temper, threatening terrible punishments to students. What are some of the reasons why such problems may arise? This is the question teachers need to reflect upon. Some possible reasons are boredom, peer pressure, lack of attention, unfair treatment by the teacher, low self-esteem ,problems at home or outside of the classroom, and much more. In Unit 19, there is a very powerful statement made. “The behavior and attitude/personality of the teacher is perhaps the single most important factor in a classroom and thus have a major effect on discipline.” This is extremely powerful because the teacher can change the situation. No matter the situation. It is all up to how the teacher conducts him/herself. Problems at home or outside the classroom is very difficult for the teacher to deal with, however this is something that teachers should keep in mind. There are many other aspects within the classroom that the teacher can reflect upon. Am I giving all the students equal attention and equal respect? Are there any students that may feel pressure from other students? Are my lessons always the same or am I making them fun and engaging? Do I often make threats of punishment and sometimes never follow through with them? Do I lose my temper when students do not follow directions or things do not go the way I would like it to? Do I have favorites in the classroom? These are all questions to consider because these are circumstances that the teacher can prevent and change ultimately. In addition, from my experience, establishing rapport from the very beginning, the start of a new class is very important. In Unit 5, it also states, “Rapport between the teacher and students play an important part in determining if a class is successful and enjoyable. Students are more likely to contribute and take part in the lessons when the atmosphere is relaxed and they get on well with the teacher.” There were many students in my classes where the students were very disruptive. They would not do the work, talk to other students, walk around the classroom, make noise, etc. However there was always a reason behind their behavior. Because there was rapport with my students, when I asked the students after class or during a break why they were acting in certain ways, they would respond honestly and straightforwardly with various reasons such as, “I don’t understand the lesson.” “The lesson is boring. I wanted to learn more about ___.” “I can’t see the board.” “I’m tired from my other classes.” “I want to do more acting out activities.” The answers were sometimes surprising but it helped tremendously for me to change aspects of the lesson and try new things to make the lesson more enjoyable. Ultimately it is up to the teacher to proactively take action to prevent and fix the problems that arise in the classrooms. Punishment as a consequence only works in the short run. To figure out the underlying cause and to make the effort to understand the students so that changes can be made in the classroom will work in the long run.