Classroom management

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  • Evertson and Weinstein define classroom management as "the actions teachers take to create an environment that supports and facilitates both academic and social-emotional learning
  • Positive impression givers include sitting at the front, maintaining eye contact, and being prepared. This as opposed to negative impression givers: rolling one's eyes in response to a statement by the teacher or by a peer, leaving course materials at home, and so on.
    Classroom management is not merely a "bag of tricks" that is passed on from one teacher to another--it is "a multifaceted endeavor that is far more complex than establishing rules, rewards, and penalties to control students' behavior."
  • Both systems have definite benefits for student-teacher communication, but they can only go so far.
  • What type of room do you teach in? What are its advantages? Disadvantages?
    What technologies are available in our “smart” classrooms? (Tech is subject of next slide (as well as next module!), good to introduce here)
  • Do you use the technology available in your classrooms?
    What technologies are worthwhile in the classroom, and what aren’t?
    What advantages are there to abolishing technology in the classroom?
  • Plan your curriculum as desired, then assume that you will only be able to deliver, say, 80% of it. Go back to your plan, then, identify the 20% that you will take out, revise your curriculum, and feel good about it. Another way might be to view only forty out of the fifty minutes allotted to the lesson as the time available to you, leave the rest open, and still feel good about it. Whatever approach you take, be disciplined, thoughtful, and careful not to view this strategy as a mandate for designing a loose curriculum.
  • Five expectations from teachers:
    A teacher should recognize his own ethnocentrism and biases.
    He should know his students' cultural backgrounds.
    He should understand the broader social, economic, and political context in which the class is situated.
    He should be able and willing to use culturally appropriate management strategies.
    He should commit to building a caring classroom.
  • Five expectations from teachers:
    A teacher should recognize his own ethnocentrism and biases.
    He should know his students' cultural backgrounds.
    He should understand the broader social, economic, and political context in which the class is situated.
    He should be able and willing to use culturally appropriate management strategies.
    He should commit to building a caring classroom.
  • Be on the lookout for parents who:
    call or e-mail the instructor too frequently
    may have excessive involvement in students' homework
    challenge the authority of the instructor or interfering with his decision making
    make their children uncomfortable in front of their peers
  • “Caring” doesn’t necessarily mean warm and fuzzy.
  • “Caring” doesn’t necessarily mean warm and fuzzy.
  • Classroom management

    1. 1. Consider the following classroom-related scenarios or questions, some of which you discussed for your Spruz reactions this week. Compare your group members’ reactions or proposed ways of solving such scenarios. Are there differences? Similarities? Are these real issues that you face in your classes? •A student continues to use his cell phone to send text messages during class time. •A student is disrespectful to her peers, rolls her eyes when they speak, and mocks her classmate’s language productions. •A student is obviously depressed. He is unkempt, does not show interest, and even though he comes to class regularly, he is rarely present mentally. •You have found out that two students submitted identical homework assignments. DISCUSS
    2. 2. Classroom management • Four areas where teachers can take action as they shape the classroom environment: – Discipline and control. – The physical classroom and our involvement in its design as we try to shape the learning environment. – Designing the syllabus as an organizational tool which allows both careful planning and improvisation. – Building cultural sensitivity into our curriculum as a component in our quest for social and moral growth of both instructors and students.
    3. 3. Discipline • What undesirable student behaviors have you encountered in your class? • Strategies for addressing discipline issues: – Define expectations and policies early. – Be careful not to embarrass a student in front of his peers . – Consider possible causes of discipline issues. – Encourage appropriate behavior, discourage disruption. – Stay cool, but make sure to draw lines. – Document disruptive behaviors.
    4. 4. Remote Control • Classroom monitoring software – Allows an instructor to access, in a lab setting, computers used by the students, supervising their work and communicating as necessary with individual students or with the class as a whole. • Student response system software – Equips students with hand-held devices and allows them to provide immediate input that is processed on the central computer used by the instructor. – Students respond by pushing a button on their hand-held devices, giving the teacher an immediate indication of whether or not he got his point across.
    5. 5. Think about and identify local resources for classroom management. Does your institution have a special unit that deals with behavioral concerns such as plagiarism, harassment, frequent absences, and low performance? DISCUSS
    6. 6. Classroom types • Auditorium • Medium-sized classroom • Small classroom • Lecture classroom • Seminar room • Lab room “Smart” classrooms – have technology console
    7. 7. Technology classroom • Let pedagogy drive the tools in and layout of our classrooms. – McMaster University • Inverted classroom – Take technology out of the classroom, reserve classroom space for interaction • “Teach Naked” – NO technology allowed
    8. 8. Comfort in the classroom • Is there an ideal classroom design? • What does it look like? • Is the classroom you teach in ideal? Why or why not?
    9. 9. Number of students • ACTFL position statement on class size (2006) – “Given the goals of a standards- based language program (i.e., the development of students' communicative competence), there must be opportunity for frequent and meaningful student-to-teacher and student-to-student interaction, monitored practice, and individual feedback during instructional time. This warrants attention to a class size that remains as small as possible.”
    10. 10. •What is the ideal number of students in a language class? Why? •What size class would you consider uncomfortably small? •What size class would you consider impossibly small? •What size class would you consider ideal? •What size class would you consider uncomfortably large? •What size class would you consider impossibly large? DISCUSS
    11. 11. How much improvisation? • A language instructor, while planning for lessons should: – intentionally leave a certain portion of the time allocated to each lesson unplanned – allow for improvisation or spontaneous reactions in response to developments that take place as the lesson unfolds – let the students dictate, to some extent, what happens in the lesson, without compromising the integrity of the curriculum or falling too far behind
    12. 12. In-class activities • Planned activities often end up having unplanned effects or outcomes.
    13. 13. The syllabus • The syllabus is a document that mediates the interactions between students and instructors and between instructors and their colleagues • Should be balanced so that it can appeal to students, motivate and structure their learning, while, at the same time, can convince colleagues and external evaluators of the instructor's professionalism and the course quality. • Amendment to the Texas Legislature House Bill 2504 (2009) includes instruction on the content of syllabi!
    14. 14. •Consider the syllabus you use to teach your course. •How much control/input do you have over the contents? •What parts of the syllabus are effective, according to the above description? •What parts could be improved, and how? •What will you do differently when you get the opportunity to design your syllabus entirely on your own? DISCUSS
    15. 15. The culturally responsive classroom • “A lack of multicultural competence can exacerbate the difficulties that … teachers … have with classroom management. Definitions and expectations of appropriate behavior are culturally influenced, and conflicts are likely to occur when teachers and students come from different cultural backgrounds.” Weinstein, Tomlinson-Clarke, and Curran (2004)
    16. 16. The culturally responsive classroom (2) • Some cultural issues that we may encounter in our classes are: – learners' attitudes toward the target language or toward a teacher who may be a non-native speaker – parents' expectations from their children and readiness to involve themselves in the educational process, especially when it involves a heritage culture – a variety of learning and social interaction styles that by now are ingrained in our adult students – different degrees of willingness to accept and support students with language learning disabilities
    17. 17. Helicopter parents • Believe it or not, even college students have parents who like to get involved in their education! • Remember the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA): – schools must have written permission from the student in order to release any information from a student's education record
    18. 18. Non-native language teachers • One of the difficulties that language teachers face is rooted in the perception that their abilities and qualifications as language teachers are diminished if they are non-native speakers of the target language. • Consider advantages and disadvantages to being a non- native speaker of the language you teach.
    19. 19. The “caring classroom” • Create an environment where students feel respected, trusted, and supported by one another and by the instructor. – Push students to the limit, but respect their boundaries. – Create a norm of sharing and group work, while defining for the students areas in which they are expected to work strictly on their own. – Move around, and let students move as much as possible. – Encourage laughter and positive humoring, but be careful not to let things get out of hand. – Respect shyness. – Allow students to speak about that which is close to their hearts. – Make students aware of learning styles. – Allow students to mentor peers with language learning disabilities or those who experience difficulties.
    20. 20. Collaborate with a group of peers, each one focused on a learning style: visual, auditory, kinesthetic. Have a short conversation on what each style entails, and then come up with questions and queues that you will train students in a first-semester language class to use as they interact with students with different learning styles. [Note: The point of the exercise is not to identify students' learning styles, but to work with them in a way that supports their learning styles.] DISCUSS
    21. 21. 1 "a shy man cannot learn, nor can the impatient man teach" (Mishna Avot 2:6)
    22. 22. Homework • Prepare technology module • Spruz reflection 12 • Observation 3 due next week • SPN 6940: Taller de enseñanza next week

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