Stay on Target… Stay on Target: 10 Tried and True Classroom Management Strategies Every Teacher Should Know

Stay on Target... Stay on Target: 10 Tried and True Classroom Management Strategies Every Teacher Should Know

Did you know that the benefits of classroom management have been found to be effective for up to 85% of students? If you’re experiencing behavioral problems in the classroom, you can’t depend on good people skills alone.

When you care about the learning of your students, you need to be able to control the classroom in order to teach properly. You need to learn about the tried and trusted classroom management strategies that have proven to be effective.

This article is for teachers who want to learn about the classroom management strategies which have been proven to actually work. Let’s go!

1. Non-Verbal Cues

Have you ever noticed that body language can be effective than verbal communication in the classroom? You may discover that a subtle movement can make a significant difference in the behavior of the classroom at the moment.

For example, if you’re far away from the offending student, move towards the student while making eye contact. It may be that you need to raise your hand to signal that you want attention rather than to announce that you demand quiet.

If the student doesn’t appear to be aware of your signals, you may need to communicate verbally to make a stronger point.

2. Nonverbal Transition Cues

It is common for teachers to divide the lesson into different sections. For example, the teaching part, the undertaking of a task and the review or summary of the learnings.

How can you indicate to the class that you’re transitioning from one phase to another without the need to communicate it verbally?

You need to integrate non-verbal transition cues which alert the class to the next learning event. This can be either a sound or a visual cue.

For example, the turning on or off of the light can regain the attention of the classroom. Instead, you could use the ringing of a bell or blowing a whistle to grab the attention of the classroom.

Some teachers involve the students themselves to determine which non-verbal cues should be used for transitions. This has been found to support the community spirit of the class.

3. Timeouts

The timeout strategy has been used by teachers for many decades. It’s easy to see why since the practice is backed up with scientific evidence.

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Timeouts are a disciplinary method of giving an offending student the time in isolation to re-consider misbehaviors. It is usually distinguished from other disciplinary strategies, such as corporal punishment, which has been largely rejected by educational research.

However, it’s important to be aware that the timeout strategy cannot be used independently of other techniques of behavior management. It has to be part of a wider package of classroom control.

4. Over-Correction

It may require time and effort on the part of your students to become familiar with your classroom management style. You can adopt the over-correction strategy to drill your approach into the students.

For example, imagine you prefer your students to line-up outside of your classroom before entering in together. You might need to practice this several times until it becomes second nature for your students.

This is considered a positive practice since after some time, your students should execute your approach with pride and enthusiasm. With this technique, you will experience the benefits of classroom management.

5. Positive Reinforcement

It is easy to concentrate on poor behavior as a teacher. Even if you have high expectations for your students, it’s important to reward and praise your students when they perform well.

There are many methods of conducting positive reinforcement in the classroom. For example, you can write a letter to the parents of the student praising their performance in a recent assignment.

You can also leave a note of praise on a student’s desk to be received. This is a powerful way to build trust and rapport with individual students who have demonstrated good behavior.

6. Short Reminders to Correct Behavior

Sometimes you may find that some kinds of misbehavior don’t warrant any discipline but rather a mere short reminder.

This should usually be carried out in private with the student. This could be either a discreet non-verbal signal, such as eye contact.

However, it’s important not to become dependent on reminders. This could trivialize your words in the future. Therefore, you could combine a short reminder with a promise of consequences if your request for attention is not followed.

7. Know the Names of Your Students

You may take it for granted that you should know your students by name. But it’s also an important classroom management strategy to earn the respect of your classroom.

Studies have shown that even if you don’t know every name of the students in your classroom, the perception that you do improves your ability to control.

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This allows you to address the students by name. For example, “Good morning James, are you going to behave well today?”.

8. Mindfulness Training

Mindfulness was previously considered a spiritual or hippy practice. However, nowadays it has been established as an effective technique for self-regulation in the classroom.

By introducing mindfulness meditation into the classroom, you can help your students become calm and relaxed before or after class.

The simple practice of watching the breathing in through nose and out through the mouth has been shown to have numerous health benefits for children and adults.

9. Note and Comment

It’s important to be aware of the changes in the behavior of your students. Such changes come out of nowhere.

You should recognize such changes and comment on them to the student. You can ask the question, “you’re extremely well behaved today? Why is this?”

This provides you with the essential feedback to your teaching and classroom control approach. Also, this allows you to demonstrate to students that you care about their well-being and education.

10. When and Then

If a student is not paying attention to you, then you could use the “when and then” approach. This allows you to reinforce the responsibility of the student for his or her education.

For example, you could state, “when you calm down and start listening, then I will help you with the task.”

Classroom Management Strategies

Now you know the classroom management strategies that every teacher should know. You can pick and choose the strategies which work best for your classroom and teaching style.

By following these techniques, you can teach your students to self-regulate and build strong relationships with your students. If you would like to read more education blog posts, check out this here.

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