Post by jordancatalano4ever on Jul 28, 2018 17:23:40 GMT -5
So I feel like I have fairly good discipline but it could certainly be better. I feel like I could do a better job with waiting for them to quiet. So I do “clap once if you can here me. Clap twice if you can hear me”. It works pretty well. It works even with students who aren’t mine if I’m in the library or another setting. But I still get some who continue to blurt after I’ve gotten the majority to settle. What do you do for those children.
Also how do you manage talking during independent work time. I have over the years felt like it’s okay but sometimes I regret allowing it because some talk too much and don’t put out quality work because they are socializing. I notice other classes have more quiet independent work and I admire it. I’ve never felt like I learned how to achieve this. How do you balance your class being enjoyable but keep it strict?
I teach middle school. We teach our kids "If you can hear my voice, clap once..." They know from day one if we ever have to get to clap three times it means after school detention time with us. We never get past two, very rarely past one.
Generally, we don't mind some quiet talking in our room, as long as they aren't giving each other the answers and are completing work. Then when we need them to be silent during quiet worktime (like tests and such), they are. Granted, our curriculum with STEM is very group work friendly and student inquiry based. We do a lot of think, pair, share as well, which helps because students know they will have time to chat.
I have a bell. During independent time, I'll call out a heads up-- i.e. "you have 3 minutes to finish up," and then after I ring the bell, I count down from 5. Once I get to 0, I start counting up, and however long it takes the class to be ready to listen to me, they owe me that time later (for us, during recess). I keep a running tally of seconds through the day, so sometimes it ends up being several minutes if they're having a bad day.
I teach 5th grade, and my kids have learned to take the counting seriously, because I won't stop counting until everyone is ready.
If they're talking during independent silent work time, I will deal with it on an individual basis if it's just a few students. If it's several, I do the bell and counting to take a few minutes to remind them of the expectations. If the talking continues, I give them a consequence. Often, I give them a small reward (like earning off time) if they can work silently and focused for X amount of time. That motivates them and gives them a sense of control.
I teach Kindergarten, so this may not work for you, but we do a lot of call and respond. The classes I've had in the past still remember them and love when they come in my room to respond as well. Some of our favorites are (first saying is mine, second is theirs): "Winner winner" "Chicken Dinner"-this one is always their favorite! "Peanut Butter" "Jelly Time" "Neato" "Burrito" "To Infinity" "And Beyond" "All Set" "You bet" "Chop Chop" "Lollipop" "Nice Thinkin" "Abe Lincoln"
I front load classroom procedures and routines at the beginning of the year. We spend 4-5 days without any curriculum related stuff, just building classroom community, going over expectations, etc. Then i consistently reinforce for the first month. The same for any new activity - I always go over expectations procedures beforehand. Sometimes it takes more time than the actual activity, but it’s worth it, especially if we repeat the activity later in the year.
The other thing I make sure is that in the beginning I’m pretty “in top of them.” So in the beginning, if I say no talking during this individual class work, I am pretty strict about no talking. I have found if I give them a little bit of leeway in the beginning, it’s hard to get it back later on. If I am much more rigid in the beginning, I can eventually relax more as the year progresses.
I also refuse to talk, give directions, etc. until every student is looking at me and not talking. I stand at the front of the room and just say “I’ll wait,” and that usually gets them quiet in a few seconds. Sometimes I have to give a reminder like “eyes on me,” but not very often.
I do a TON of partner work, group work, etc. where the kids are up and moving and talking, so I tell them it’s not unreasonable to expect them to be quiet for 10 minutes during a mini lesson, or 10 minutes during journal work, etc.
I teach 6th ELA currently, btw, and taught 7th ELA for 9 years.
I did the same as hymen . I taught 5th. It worked very well. Waiting until everyone is looking at me ("I know you are ready when your hands are empty and your eyes are on me"), being strict in the beginning, having a variety of work during the day where talking is permitted and being clear that they get lots of "ok to talk" time so silent time should be respected, etc.
I taught Science so I wrote the word LAB on the board. If I asked them to get quiet and they didn't (or to lower their voices if they were getting too loud during partner/group work), I would erase a letter. If they still didn't quiet down as asked or if it started up again, I'd erase another. If I had to erase a 3rd letter, we took a break and did silent, independent work until we could reset and try again. It worked extremely well for me and I'd hear lots of "shhh, shhh, we're going to lose another letter!" if I asked them to lower the volume and it didn't happen quickly. They learned to self-police through the year.
ETA: I also had shields available for students to use if they chose. Often students who were frustrated by someone at their table would choose to use a shield to show that they were focused on their work and not talking. It was a pretty effective means of having them communicate to their peers verbally and non-verbally that they were not interested in chatting during independent work time.