Classroom Management
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scenes, and then the
numbers for my reactions to
each of them. Click home
when the button appears.
Prevention #1
In this lesson, Mr.Smith we’ll call him,
is addressing the specific topic of
Kamikaze pilots during WWII. Aspects
of this war have been taught thousands
of different ways, in all sorts of history
classes. This particular teacher has
initiated a creative and energetic plan
to get his points across. I think of Costa
and Kallick’s habits of mind watching
this video. In particular, I think
Mr.Smith exhibits both responsible risk
taking, and bringing humor into the
classroom. We don’t know where he
went with this lesson afterwards, and
we don’t know how the students did
on their assessment. I’m willing to bet
that they understood the lesson and
give Mr.Smith their full attention right
from the start.
Action #1
As a social studies major, and a student
of historical topics such as this one, I
know that the topics of WWII have been
taught over and over using a straight
lecture technique. The actions taken by
this teacher to capture the attention of
his students is captivating. I am
assuming that this energetic method and
demeanor of his, isn’t just used up
during this small lesson, but also brought
about in other lesson plans. Some of the
risk I see in his management style
however has to do with Linderoth’s
Affordance Theory. Mr. Smith runs the
risk of creating a learning environment
that becomes more distracting for his
students. So although I think his
creativity, and energy are two of his
greatest assets, it’s possible that they’re
also culprits of learning distraction.
Resolution #1
As a habit of mind, finding humor and
bringing it into the classroom is a
valuable solution to repetitive teaching
methods. We can’t underestimate the
effects it can have on our classes. Costa
and Kallick write about laughter that it’s
“positive effects on psychological
functions include a drop in the pulse
rate, the secretion of endorphins, an
increased oxygen in the blood”. This to
me describes a energy boost that sounds
almost illegal. It’s a solution that grabs a
hold of fading attention spans, and
sparks interest. I personally may tone it
down one notch, but I will choose this
style over a monotone lecture any day of
the week.
Prevention #2
This video starts out with the students listing off
the 5 rules of their classroom, they were,
1.Follow directions.
2. Respect others, respect yourself, and
respect your school.
3. Be safe
4. Raise your hand for permission to speak.
5.Be honest.
Right away we can point out Maslow’s needs
being met for these children. Their safety
needs are boldly represented by rule #3, but all
the other rules provide for esteem needs,
belonging, and social needs. These student’s
are being taught to respect their peers both in
their classroom and as they venture out into
the school. They are being taught to
communicate with each other honestly and
respectfully by raising their hands and waiting
their turn. Even if this is just a good day in her
classroom, these students are buying into her
program and it’s exciting to watch.
Action #2
To your right is Ms. Nircher’s school principal.
She believes this young teacher’s success comes
from the young teachers willingness to be
different. Lippman’s Practice theory states
“The opportunity for learning is created by the
environment that is created inside the
classroom not the physical space itself”. One of
her management techniques that created a
useful, quiet, and respectful learning
environment, was when instead allowing the
students to shout out an easy answer, she
developed her own special answering
technique. She had them hold their breath,
blow the answer into their hands, and then
raise them high in the air, pausing for the count
of three, where they then all shared the answer
together. It bottled up all their energy and put
it towards the same goal together, which was
the answer she was looking for.
Resolution #2
If Dr. Mel Levine and Mrs.Nircher were ever to
join forces the combination would surely
produce at least 3 astronauts, 4 published
writers, a president or two, and host of others
who would go through life full of self-esteem,
eager to learn, with a spark of creativity and
genuine kindness. Now of course I don’t know
this and I don’t have direct evidence. However,
on this video I can see a professional who
shines through genuinely, with her caring
relationship toward her students, She breaks
into small groups when needed, as we see a
picture of to the right. This is her adapting to
certain children’s needs, possibly “attention
control issues”(Levine) that can be overlooked
in the full class layout. When she’s waiting for
an answer at one point during the video she’s
saying, “One of my friends has the answer,
there’s another, I’m still waiting for one more
friend to answer.” As they write on their dry
erase boards. These exact examples aren’t
perfect solutions for an older class, but the
themes of care, flexibility and respect will go a
long way in creating a positive learning
environment for every learner.
This is what the example shown here is not. This
environment is not conducive to learning. This
teacher is not trying to show respect to his students,
and in return the students are not showing respect
towards him. They’re showing fear, but this takes
them far away from feeling at all safe, or
comfortable. Which according to Maslow, and
relating closely to Glasser’s “Choice Theory,” will
keep these students from accomplishing anything in
class that day. We looked at an article called
“Discipline with Dignity”(Curwin&Mendler), one of
their basic principles is, “be a model of what you
expect.” We can probably guess that this class period
didn’t start out as the teacher expected it to. Maybe
there was a lot of chattering and goofing off. Even
so, a teacher would never want students to lash out
at peers to handle an argument, so what does that
mean when the teacher does? What example is that
providing? If he would have been respectful of his
students, by addressing them as people from the
beginning, and also respecting their space, he would
have had a different scenario play out, one with
mutual respect, and a better understanding of
Prevention #3
Action #3
In this particular part of the scene, the teacher
becomes completely ineffective after he invades
his student’s space. This student was disobeying
his violent orders to stand during the National
Anthem. We need to ask, “Why was he
disobeying?” It’s because of the environment that
was created from the first moment the teacher
raised his voice at them. This student felt he was
disrespected and therefore felt no obligation to
return respect. This lead to the teacher pulling the
stool out from under his student, which is
completely unsafe, especially when they’re in a
shop class that probably focuses a lot on shop
safety. It also crossed physical boundaries that
shouldn’t be touched. This scene ended with the
student verbally showing a compete disregard for
this teacher. Unless this altercation was addressed
by the teacher with a sincere apology to the whole
class, I feel further lessons will not hold value for
the students, as no respect exists between teacher
and student. Also, a personal meeting with the one
particular student, his parent(s), and an
administrator would give the teacher a chance to
explain his actions, but much more importantly
apologize to these people specifically, because he
let them all down.
Resolution #3
Skinner explained that, “Learning is a response
to events (stimuli).” So from the start, the
students in this classroom are not learning
anything about the lesson plan for the day. The
learning they’ve accomplished for the day
came in response to this teacher’s outburst in
the first few minutes of class. His solution for
the next day of class is to apologize for his
disrespectful behavior. He needs to own up to
everything he did wrong in that situation--not
only to get his classroom back, but to teach his
class that his way of handling that situation is
not an example they should follow. The next
time he gets worked up like that, he needs to
just breathe and give himself 10 seconds or a
couple minutes to think things out before he
reacts. This teacher has done a lot of damage,
and his very next move will be the determining
factor for classroom management for the rest
of their school year.
Prevention #4
This is Mr. Panimino, I feel for this guy right
away when I watch this video. He’s a new
teacher whose ability to effectively discipline
and create order in the classroom has not
surfaced yet. When the time comes, I imagine I
will have some of these same problems. I think
it stems from an idea that we want to treat the
students as equals, and we think that having
order means being strict. And somehow that
means the same as being cruel. Order and
management in the classroom are good for
everybody’s learning experience. The
distractions in this video show an environment
that is completely unsuitable for anyone
actually trying to learn. Prevention for Mr.
Panimino lies within boundaries. These students
don’t respect his boundaries as a person, let
alone as teacher and authority figure.
Discussing individually with some of the
students in the video, that this behavior is
unacceptable, and telling them why, could be
useful in creating a common ground for them to
build an appropriate student-teacher
relationship on.
Action #4
His actions were initially to try and
ignore distractions. He sat at his desk,
glanced through paperwork, and
pretended to write stuff down. Maybe
thinking something along the lines of,
“Ring bell, please ring!” When he tried
to get everyone’s attention, the
behavior only continued, and so did his
easy going demeanor that the kids felt
free to trample all over. At one point the
young lady we see in the picture here,
tells him that she’s going to punch him
on the arm. She went on to tell him 3
more times before actually punching
him. It was playful and caused no
physical harm, but now no one is taking
him seriously, and the class has no
intention of settling down when they see
such little reaction--rather than an
assertive one.
Resolution #4
Looking once again at the article “Discipline
with Dignity,” Curwin & Mendler say that as a
basic principle, teachers need to make “long
term changes, not quick fixes.” This situation is
not going to resolve itself if he simply sends the
three main instigators down to the principal’s
office. Instead, he needs to form a contract
with the students, decided on by both student
and teacher, that lays out proper rules for the
class (C & M). This social contract can create
mutual respect and trust within this studentteacher relationship. Once established, and
desirably made into a visual in the classroom,
the rules will be there for everyone to know
when things are going as planned and when it’s
becoming out of control. At this point they
should be able to agree on what is needed to
be done to better the situation for learning.
Costa, Arthur., and Kallick, Benna.
“Describing 16 Habits of Mind.” 2000. Course handout.
Curwin, Richard L., and Allen N. Mendler. "Discipline with Dignity." 7 Oct. 2007
Gibson, J J. "Affordance." 1979. 7 Oct. 2007
Glasser, William. "Choice Theory." Wikipedia.
Levine, Mel. “A Mind At A Time.” 2003. New York: Simon and Schuster.
Lippman, Peter C. "Practice Theory, Pedagogy, and the Design of Learning
Environments." The American Institue of Architects. 7 Oct. 2007
"Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs." Wikipedia. 7 Oct. 2007