Personal Teacher Classroom Management Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Classroom Management

My classroom management theory is based on a constructivist approach to learning, which implies that there is a mutual responsibility between the learner and the instructor to move forward with the learning experience. My current position is in the First Grade, which at times can make this somewhat challenging. In many ways, First Grade is a segue into a "real" school atmosphere: longer day, more academics, less play, stricter expectations, social growth, challenging social and academic environment and more. Often, the first few months of First Grade are transitions into expected behaviors and a more regimented school day, so classroom management can be challenging at times. Overall, I have been using placement of students (moving desks, etc.), challenging paced lessons and a reward system for good behavior, excellence in teamwork, assignments, etc. By in large, this has been quite effective for this level of student, most of whom respect adult authority and look to the teacher for leadership and modeling of behaviors.

Classroom Management Theory

Based on research, experience and conversations with colleagues, I believe that the most effective classroom is one in which there are a combination of activities and philosophical models. The classroom should enhance student comfort and trust -- they must feel safe in their environment. There must be color and active visual stimuli, and a sense of continual adventure in learning. Students should be encouraged to think of their classroom as their own community away from home, and be encouraged to participate and actualize their needs appropriately. Certainly, constructivism tells us that each learner is unique, yet there must also be a willingness on both the instructor and learner's sides to be flexible and adapt to changing conditions. There is a great deal of research available that shows how important innovation is in classroom management in the 21st century school environment, as well as classroom management frustrations being at the top of the list of reasons teachers lack job satisfaction in some environments. In fact, the U.S. National Educational Association noted that almost 40% of teachers surveyed said that given the choice, they would probably not go into teaching again because of "negative student attitudes and discipline" and their lack of freedom in managing their class (Schneider, 2003).

Strategies and Developmental Considerations

In doing some research on classroom management and student development for the younger child, I found that over the past few decades, in fact, expectations both academically and behaviorally have drastically increased for early age children; particularly with the expectations of what they must be ready for to transition to a full-day First Grade environment. The more effective a teacher is in classroom management, the greater the translation to an effective learning environment and the greater the cognitive and social development of the young child. This is very important in the First and Second grade environments, because it helpes prepare students to stay on task and increase expectations of behavioral management. Too, using this approach to managing the class will incentivize the students as they mature and move into the upper grades -- good behavior achieves better rewards. The children must understand what is expected of them, and the teacher must follow through with those expectations (Rimm-Kaufman, S., et al., 2009).

One of the ways in which teachers and counselors can use play to effectively change behaviors, manage a classroom, and interact with difficult children is through the use of role…

Sources Used in Document:

REFERENCES

Sutton-Smith, B. (1997). The Ambiguity of Play. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

The National Institute for Play. (2011). Play Science -- The Patterns of Play. Retrieved from: http://www.nifplay.org/states_play.html

Rimm-Kaufman, S., et al. (2009). The Contribution of Children's Self-Regulation and Classroom Quality to Children's Adaptive Behaviors. Journal of Developmental Psychology. 45 (4), 958-72.

Schneider, M. (2003). Linking School Conditions to Teacher Satisfaction. Retrieved from: http://www.edfacilities.org/pubs/teachersurvey.pdf

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