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Classroom Rules for High School

Classroom Rules for High School
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  • 0:00 Why Do High Schoolers…
  • 2:06 How to Develop Classroom Rules
  • 3:36 Consistency in Rules
  • 4:30 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Brian Fraga
The focus of this lesson is to address classroom rules at the high school level. First, we'll look at examples, we'll discuss the need for classroom rules, and finally, we'll look at how to create classroom rules.

Why Do High Schoolers Need Classroom Rules?

Whether you're a first year teacher, you have been teaching for 10 years, or you are nearing retirement, it is important to have a set of classroom rules for your high school classroom. Yes, I did say high school. Regardless of the ages of your students, they still require guidance, and you need to have rules that the students in your classroom follow in hopes of maintaining order for the school year.

Chances are that when you take the time to generate a series of well-defined rules for your classroom, you will help instill order throughout the school year. Otherwise, you will find yourself battling with your students all year long. The choice is yours.

Classroom rules are a set of rules (guidelines) for what is expected of each of your students when they arrive to class, while they are in your classroom, and when they leave your class. These are the guiding principles that will assist students when it comes to making choices in your classroom.

By providing a framework of rules for your students, you help to create a positive learning environment and provide boundaries for your students to operate within. A successful and orderly class can only be created when rules are consistently enforced and consequences are administered when a rule is broken.

Imagine dinner time with your family, and the nightly routine is the same. After dinner, one member of your family clears the table while another member puts away the dirty dishes. Your kitchen, for all intents and purposes, is clean. What happens if one of your family members decides not to complete their task? What happens if the other member doesn't want to do their job either? Now you've got a messy kitchen, and none of the work was completed.

Without classroom rules, your classroom would look like this kitchen. So which kitchen, or classroom, would you want to work in? I would definitely prefer the clean, or structured, environment.

Most students will quickly understand and follow your classroom rules while others may need additional time understanding them. The National Educators Association says rules are just like other instructional activities. They have to be taught, reviewed, and reinforced if they are to be remembered.

How to Develop Classroom Rules

So, how can we develop rules in the classroom?

You'll want to start with a few non-negotiable classroom procedure rules. Here are a few suggested examples of non-negotiable rules:

  • Arrive to class on-time
  • Be prepared for class
  • Keep hands and feet to yourself
  • Clean up after yourself

What rules do you think are important, or what rules would you come up with for your classroom? Here are a couple of rules I felt were important for my high school students:

  1. Be on time; I'm here on time, and I expect the same from you.
  2. No use of electronic devices (phones, tablets, etc.) during class; I try to create lessons that allow them time to use such devices.

Limit rules to only a few, as to not overwhelm your students.

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