Developing a Personal Philosophy of Classroom Management

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  • 0:04 What Is Classroom Management?
  • 0:50 Classroom Rules
  • 1:36 Behavior Management
  • 3:44 Age-Appropriate Management
  • 4:14 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Derek Hughes

Derek has a Masters of Science degree in Teaching, Learning & Curriculum.

Classroom management is one of the most important aspects of teaching. Your system will depend largely on your personal beliefs and feelings. This lesson details how you can develop a philosophy for successful classroom management.

What Is Classroom Management?

To be a successful educator, you need to master classroom management. Classroom management refers to the ways in which a teacher reinforces and develops student behavior and responsibilities in the classroom. This is the backbone of any instructional plan, for effective learning and teaching can only take place if a good management system is present.

However, there is no one-size-fits-all template for classroom management. Management strategies and tools largely depend on individualized philosophy of student behavior and classroom atmosphere. Though teachers might borrow ideas from one another, implementation varies depending on the individual. Let's discuss how several aspects of classroom management can differ depending on personal philosophy.

Classroom Rules

The cornerstone of any behavior management philosophy is the list of guidelines for the classroom. Though this might seem simple, you've probably seen many lists of classroom rules. Classroom rules vary depending on the teacher's individual philosophy.

For example, Mr. Walker, a 6th grade science teacher, believes that students should be responsible for developing and following classroom procedures. In this case, Mr. Walker allows his students, through discussion, to formulate their own list of classroom guidelines to follow. However, other teachers might feel that it's best to have a pre-written set of rules that are clearly explained to students. In this instance, each student should understand the rules and the rewards for following them or consequences for breaking them.

Behavior Management

Though sometimes used interchangeably, classroom and behavior management are generally not the same. Behavior management determines how you will enforce rules, react to negative behaviors, and reinforce positive behaviors. Let's take a look at two examples of behavior management:

Mrs. Smith is a veteran 1st grade teacher who has her classroom and behavior management systems perfected. For behavior, she uses a color chart with 7 colors: pink, purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red from top to bottom. Every week, students start on green and can move up and down the color chart depending on their behaviors. For example, if a student is not following one of the classroom rules, Mrs. Smith will ask that student to move their clip down a color. The opposite happens if a student is setting a good example.

At the end of the day, students below green get a consequence, depending on their own chart. Yellow is usually a verbal warning, while orange means the loss of a privilege. Red means a phone call home. These students then start on green the next day, essentially wiping their slate clean. Students who work up to pink by the end of the week receive a prize from the prize box on Friday afternoon.

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