I currently teach 6th and 7th grade and am observing an Algebra 1 class during my prep time. I will answer the prompted questions as a self-reflection of my current classroom management strategies and add some of my observations in as well. I for one think that one of the greatest strategies for starting a lesson is “Think, Pair, Share”. I have seen this done by other teachers and adopted it into my own teaching style now. “Think, Pair, Share” as a lesson opener gives students a chance to make their own connections to the subject presented by having a time to “think” about what they already know and share it with their peers. I also think that it is helpful to start lessons of with some form of connection to each student, whether it be a story or interesting fact that catches each students attention. During a lesson I always try to stop frequently and check for understanding instead of just blowing through the material.
3 common transitions that occur on a everyday basis for me are: Moving over to using laptops, leaving class, and entering class.
When it comes to getting laptops from the cart for in class use, I manage the chaotic transitions by releasing students in groups and not as a whole. In order to cut down on the rush of leaving the classroom and cleaning up all at the same time, I give students ample time to get the classroom all clean before leaving the class and then I make sure that they have all pushed in their chairs before they leave. For the transition of starting class I have simply implemented “bell ringers” which have proved to work wonders.
One thing that I have observed a teacher do that I would like to implement into my classroom is raising my hand to get kids to listen. I currently have a vocal cue where I tell the students to clap once and they do that then get quiet. The problem here is that if it is loud then I have to yell, which is not fun when your job requires you to talk all day already. So, I would like to implement a silent Que for students to listen.