My apologies — I’m a little late with this post. It’s fun to read everyone’s posts and to see the similarities, and also the little differences within each other’s philosiphies. As for mine…
I expect my middle school and high school students to be responsible in the classroom. I tell them that I trust their common sense and judgement to know what is acceptable and what is not in a classroom — they have been going to school for a long time already, so it’s nothing new. I try to limit how many rules I have spelled out. However, there are some important ones that I let them know I am serious about:
- Always be respectful, polite, and appropriate to your classmates and the teacher. Absolutely no making fun of others.
- Always follow directions and pay attention when teacher is speaking.
- NO unsafe behavior (this is a big one).
- Don’t wear a hat in class. (I have a thing about hats inside.)
Here is an interesting website that talks about techniques to use in an elementary classroom — some of it can be translated to a secondary classroom: https://www.helium.com/items/852226-how-to-instill-positive-discipline-and-effective-classroom-rules