I’m getting caught up on my blog posts. I apologize this one is so late.
Because I am teaching full time, I was unable to observe a teacher for my first observation, so I observed one of my own classes and wrote about that. It is my biggest class of the day, the 9th & 10th grades and are notorious in the school for being a rather…rowdy bunch. They come into my class right after lunch, and they know that they need to have their binder out. As they’re sitting down, I have their “bell ringer” ready on the board, so they know what to do once their in. This limits their socializing because they know that they need to work once they’re at their seat. Once that activity is done with, I explain to them what we will be doing in class that day, and we move on to the next assignment. I have spent a lot of time on transitions with these students and explaining to them my expectations — no goofing off, no excessive talking, get what they need and start working. Of course there’s always some chatting while they’re getting their things for the next activity, but they know that it can’t be long.
I also try to make transitions as quickly as possible, especially with these students, to give them as little opportunity as possible to get distracted; when they get distracted, it takes a while for me to reign them back in. I keep a close eye on them, especially the chronic disrupters and make sure that they’re doing what they need to be for their transition.
Right after this class I have the same students for 15 minutes of silent reading time that the entire school does. This transition involves them getting their books from their lockers, which are located in that classroom (we have a small school with no hallways). I position myself near the lockers to keep them from having a little party — this invariably happens if I take my eyes off them.