I recognize that I am truly lucky to be working with the group of students I have in my classroom this year. There are very few behavior problems, and even those seem minimal compared to other classrooms I have been in. I chose to read this article, because I wanted to learn more about how to more effectively praise and reprimand my students day to day. I know that teachers can become too comfortable in the classroom, and can sometimes forget that even well-behaved and high performing students need attention in terms of praise and reprimanding.
Since my class is so well-behaved in general, I often find myself calling out the same 2 or 3 students over and over for disruptions and off-task behavior. My stupervisor has called my attention to this, and I have since been trying to keep from saying their names more than necessary. This article made me realize that ignoring disruptive behavior, although difficult, can sometimes prove to be the most effective way to discourage it.
I also enjoyed reading about the importance of rules and expectations in the classroom, not only to smooth activities and transitions, but to provide students with a sense of security, organization, and structure in their day to day lives at school. Sometimes I get caught up in the do’s and don’ts, but I really need to stop and think about WHY we have these expectations and why the rules are in place. This is also a conversation that we can have with our students, as they more than anyone need to truly understand why we expect certain behaviors from them.
I am planning to implement some of the new strategies I have learned from reading this article, but I also think that reading it just helped me to put things back into perspective in terms of my role as a teacher in the classroom. I need to provide constant support and constructive feedback, despite how overwhelmed I may be with the content of the lessons and the chaos of the day to day.