In this episode, Burned-In Teacher Facebook Members, Sarah and Alexandra, and I discuss all things classroom and behavior management and how difficult it can be to support some students in today’s classroom. Sarah and Alexandra share situations they’re currently dealing with and what they’re doing to support their students, but also what they’re doing to support themselves and to create a culture of support in their classrooms.
Sarah Kaminski is a 6th grade ELA teacher at a middle school in central Wisconsin where she lives with her husband and two young children. Sarah has been teaching in her current district for 5 years and has been apart of district initiatives that include Personalized Learning, Writers Workshop, and UDL. She is currently working on obtaining her ELL certification to continue with her passion of understanding inclusionary practices in the classroom.
Alexandra Coutlée is an ESL specialist who has been teaching for over 15 years. She teaches at the high school level in Quebec, Canada. She has authored and co-authored many educational publications that are currently being used in Quebec schools and is very active in her English as a second language community. She is currently completing a degree in educational technology and is always looking for ways to integrate technology in her classroom.
Routines and planning
How you set up your class so it functions properly
Coregulating (Dr. Lori Desautels Episode #029)
the environment, how you make students feel, and how we feel together
Creating a compassionate learning environment together
Knowing your kids and creating a connection
all about adaptation
Having proactive behaviors
Them knowing, liking, and trusting you
Thinking outside the box for them - try things you haven’t tried
Allowing for movement breaks and for some play - yes, even the older kids
Asking for help, knowing that some students need more than what we can do - going to principal and/or counselor for extra support
Knowing it takes a village
Trying to get parents on board
Remembering there are things that are out of your control
Going back to that serenity prayer
Doing the best with what you have in that moment
Remembering time of day and subjects of interest or lack of interest can play a part in behavior too
Remembering that you get a chance to start over every day or every time the bell rings
Believe that you’re doing the best you can, in the moment with what you have
Apologizing when you make a mistake
Offering some students more support
Offering some students more stimulation
Offering some students more of a challenge
Meeting kids where they are so we aren’t reactive. When we’re reactive, students react and there’s a chain of negativity
Understanding that if you have a student who is hurt, that’s what makes it the hardest
Believing that if students are too hurt and the hurt is too deep and they need more than what we can sometimes give them
behavior management - you truly cannot manage other people’s behavior and choices
Only YOUR responsibility
Treating all classes and students the same
Expecting children to act like adults
Taking their behavior personally
Telling yourself that it’s all about you and your authority
Believing that you don’t matter
Believing that you aren’t enough
Becoming reclusive and trying to bear it all
Quitting on yourself or your student
quiet, listening to the teacher all the time
managing anyone, you can’t make anyone do anything
IF seeing no change, focus on:
How teachers can work together
It will take longer to see results from students who are really hurting
How teachers can work as a team,
Focus on the system and who can give help to the students when you can’t
Make positive phone calls.
Focus on the positive/look for the positive.
Email your teacher group about something positive that happened with that student that has been challenging.
Subscribe to blogs or podcasts that can send/give you ideas on classroom.
Observe in other classrooms.
Have someone come in to watch you and to see you and your students in action.
Resources that Sarah and Alexandra Recommend:
Teach Like a Pirate - Dave Burgess
Ditch that Textbook - Matt Miller
The 5 Second Rule - Mel Robbins
Hacking School Culture: Designing Compassionate Classrooms - Angela Stockman
Love and Logic - Jim Fay and Charles Fay, Ph.D.