My classroom management plan is attached, hoping everyone has a nice break.
My personal philosophy regarding the creation of a productive learning environment is that it begins with you. Wanting for the students to be successful and also walking into the classroom every day with good intentions and strong expectations really does change the way students perceive you and your class. From there I think the keys surrounding classroom management are setting clear rules and expectations that the students know but can also refer back to when necessary, time management and understanding. The first part, setting clear rules and expectations, is set up both at the beginning of the school year and the beginning of every class period. Class rules like “be respectful” may be posted permanently in the room while daily expectations such as “journal entry” may be on the white board. As for time management, being able to fill the class period without stressing any student out for making them work too quickly is an important thing to learn to do and do consistently. Finally, being understanding sort of explains itself, but always remember that just like you, your students have bad days and good days and days in between, that does not mean you shouldn’t give them a clean slate the next day or the next minute. I feel like the reason classroom management is so important is because it is essentially the skill of being able to make students feel safe and able to learn, and without that there is no reason to attend school. If students are not learning and they feel like they are under attack, school is no longer something that is working for them or for their community. So being able to quiet a room, to enthuse a room, to make a room a safe place to learn, those are the skills that teachers need to have and to hone. It starts with the teacher, the self, and it goes from there outward, all the way into the community.
A website: https://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/sept03/vol61/num01/The-Key-to-Classroom-Management.aspx
This is also a specific article which talks about a lot of things one can do to enhance the classroom and increase the productivity of student (great things, and well organized for if you just want to pick and choose). At the end the article also states “Teacher-student relationships should not be left to chance or dictated by the personalities of those involved,” which makes me think about the people one may just never truly “get along with” and how to deal with having a student like that. There is no excuse for treating students with anything but respect and showing them you care about their learning. I like this article’s way of portraying that. On this site you can read articles, buy a subscription to their magazine or just enjoy a few graphics, so explore once you’re done perusing this article.
A blog: https://www.liveteachalaska.com/
This blog was done by a woman named Natalie who taught in the district where I am student teaching now. While not strictly classroom management, this blog does show the process of her moving to the Bush, some of the things she experienced and then explains why she decided to leave. She taught kindergarten and seemed like she had a good time doing it! She does have a tab for teaching specifically, but also look over her whole blog when you have time if you’ve ever wondered what it might be like to teach in rural Alaska. She also did a guest blog about classroom management here: https://www.teachingvillage.org/2013/06/18/classroom-management-with-esl-students-by-natalie-britton/ just to keep it on the topic of the class.
A video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u086rr7SRso
This video is pretty down to earth and breaks down the ideas it presents in small increments so it’s easy to follow as well as easy to listen to while doing other things if necessary. His voice is easy to understand and he does present a visual aide as well as several ideas which are good to pull from. He also is willing to admit that he’s done things wrong and gives the bad examples as well as the good so that you aren’t just hearing the good ideas but also knowing from what to steer away.
On one hand I completely agree with the idea that this article is trying to convey, we should not attempt to education Native Alaskan students in a way which completely depletes or destroys their own culture. However, I think leaving the education of Native Alaskan students in rural areas up to their elders is also not a very good idea in the long run, if those students ever want to find employment outside of their home town. In America we anticipate that people will have a certain knowledge base and if part of that base is missing, it is difficult for people to get jobs, make friends and otherwise succeed. While I doubt anyone is suggesting that we abandon these villages to their own devices entirely, I think it is also important to remember that Alaska, including it’s nooks and crannies, is part of America and that Alaskans are therefore our responsibility to equip for the American job market and social structures. Many students in these rural villages now are looking into opportunities such as going to college and if they are not equipped with the tools to attend a regular classroom, converse in that classroom, learn in that classroom and grow from that experience we educators have done that student a great disservice.
Incorporating culture into the classroom is vital, and letting those cultures thrive and continue to grow is valuable beyond our comprehension. However, the students still need some incorporation of modern Americanized culture in their classroom in order to prepare them for life outside of their village should they choose such a route. I like articles like this for their ability to make people think about their own perceptions for what others need, but I also think there is no black and white answer for how to deal with education in rural Alaska. Place based education is a good step, but it isn’t a solid solution in my mind at this time.
Four rules I would post in my classroom would be:
1. Be respectful to others, including guests, students and teachers.
2. In group discussions, take turns for speaking.
3. If you take something out, put it back.
4. Enjoy your time in class!
A website to enjoy: https://www.scholastic.com/teachers/article/teaching-classroom-routines-and-procedures
I really like Scholastic for it’s resources and articles on a number of things, so it’s the first place I went to find information about classroom management. The site is organized very nicely and has sections for teachers, parents and students. This particular article is quite accessible, has examples from other texts that allow a reader to look further into the topic of classroom rules and procedures and does not pretend to be anything it is not (a full fledged guide, for instance, it is not). The examples given are simple but relatable, they echo an idea of an organized classroom which most teachers aspire to achieve. While this article does seem to aim a little low (probably for elementary students), there is always something to gain. For instance, the idea of having homework immediately on the desk when students sit down can work for going over the assignment, collecting it for attendance or just seeing if students were able to complete the assignment and bring it back. At the bottom of the article are exciting-looking related articles which actually are related to the topic discussed in this article, which may seem obvious but sometimes the “related articles” seem to be pushing the definition of “related” in my experience. There is also, and I find this especially great for articles on websites, a clear explanation of when and where the article was published which makes citations easier, and allows for the act of further research to be a simpler one to start.
I could not get Wordle to work due to the school internet blocking java it does not recognize, I am hoping to get this fixed but the only internet I have access to is at the school. But I am excited to see everyone else’s!
My name is Jasmyne Johnson and I was born in Ketchikan, Alaska. I moved to Fairbanks five years ago and just moved to Perryville, Alaska for my intern year a couple weeks ago. I am an English Bachelor’s of Arts holder and am seeking my Master’s of Education and teaching certification presently in order to start teaching high school English/Language Arts. I am looking forward to a busy but rewarding semester.