My Classroom Management Plan Essay

My Classroom Management Plan Essay

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Many of us tend to equate classroom management with discipline (and for that matter, to equate discipline with punishment, but that's another story). I see classroom management as the processes and procedures that are in place to mitigate the need for punishment, leaving discipline to cleave to its roots of "to follow." Anything else is not classroom management. It’s damage control.

Classroom management starts, for me, with very clear expectations, and firmly established procedures. I begin the year (or semester) with a more formal, regulated tone, and have so far been able to end each year and semester with an atmosphere of relaxed mutual respect. I value students’ self-control over my being in control.

Room Arrangement
One of the goals of my room set-up is to minimize non-instructional interaction. This sounds a bit impersonal and harsh, but its intent is to keep students on task, give them consistency in behavioral expectations, and to minimize their attempts to derail my teaching. Everyone benefits.


There are clear procedures written on the whiteboard behind my desk for absentees, make up work, and getting extra help. There areFAQ signs about work being for a grade, the temperature, whatever all around the room. I try to maintain a predictable schedule so students know what's expected of them during each part of the 98 minutes we spend together each day -- and don't have to ask. The agenda and objectives are on the board behind my desk. (I balked at this requirement during summer school, but have found that it allows students to know what's expected of them. They do look at it, and are quick to ask questions about the items I post that are intentionally ambiguous.) 

I have a peninsula table at the entry where ...


... middle of paper ...


...Toddlers and teens have more in common than not: They're at a transitional stage in which they are testing limits, learning boundaries, and trying on personalities. Once they learn the specific boundaries and consequences of my classroom, most are grateful for the atmosphere of safety and respect in my classroom. It’s still a daily struggle, but the amount of time I’ve spent focusing on damage control has been minimal during the school term.

Does all this mean my room is a sweat shop where students feel repressed, dragged down and not able to express themselves? No. It means that the students who are there to learn have an environment where they feel safe and able to be themselves. We have running inside jokes. And peach cobbler. I do loads of group work, peer teaching, and self-guided activities that can only be effective in a class with seamless management.

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