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Classroom Management Plan
by Brain Haley
When developing classroom plans and teaching methods, many teachers use collaborative learning techniques. This generally involves intergroup learning and the use of verbal interaction. Where the teacher is not just teaching, rather giving the students an opportunity to learn through interpersonal interaction. Some use peer groups for classroom management, thereby creating more time for personal interaction with individual students. Others use this teaching strategy to enhance students' motivation by making class work more "fun." Still others believe that collaborative learning can provide valuable opportunities for students to work together across ethnic and gender lines, thereby facilitating friendships. All of these reasons for the use of collaborative group work are worthy goals in classroom instruction. Seldom, however, is conceptual learning the primary goal behind the use of collaborative group techniques.
Following is a classroom plan that enables effective classroom management of time, and organization of activities for children.
Prepare a schedule that allows time for learning as well fun and activities. Rearrange the daily schedule, go outside to read, give clipboards to students and go outside to draw, have a theme day. For instance for every first Monday of the Month, students can come dressed in the colors of the rainbow, or for older students, they come dressed creatively in some historical attire and bring along something that they have that relates to that attire. Discussing these makes a good start for the day. These are of course just ideas and leave room for the teachers’ ingenuity. Begin the day with bell work, which is an introductory task or activity that should get them into the learning mode. From then on the lesson plan can be followed with regular fun intervals and breaks.
Ask the students to write once or twice a week: What did you learn today? for instance, and also take them outside on the school grounds and ask them to study something specific, be it the actions of a gardener, a butterfly or even the different kinds of flowers in the garden. Then ask them to write about them. This provides for the leisure and fun time activities.
When passing out tests or worksheets or notices, write the names of absent students on the papers left. When students arrive to begin the day, have them remove everything that will be needed during the day. Have a rule: NO one may get into a backpack during the day. Write a red M in the top right corner on all Master copies. This will distinguish the Master from a copy very easily and prevent accidentally passing out the master to a student. Always spend the last few minutes of the day and review: Hopefully, when parents ask about the day, students will have an answer other than "Nothing!"
In addition in particular classroom activities can be assigned to different students individually or in pairs. For instance someone can be made the monitor, to clean the blackboard, someone can be the chair stacker, someone can be the timekeeper etc. This way the small tasks that need to be completed through the class are managed by the students enabling them to take responsibility.
One key here that adheres to the theories on classroom management by Howard Glasser and Dreiker, is that of collaborative and verbal interaction learning. Throughout the class time students should be involved with verbal interaction with the teacher. The day should be planned such that it gives time and opportunity for all different students to have a special moment. Some experts believe that every student can have a focus week, where he/she gets a few minutes in the beginning of every class to share his life with the students. It not only aids in interpersonal learning, as well as linguistic learning, but it also makes the students feel special.
Bibliography: Chizhik, Alexander W., Collaborative learning through high-level verbal interaction: from theory to practice.. Vol. 72, The Clearing House, 09-19-1998, pp 58(4).