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Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Classroom Management in Australia

I found that classroom management in my Australian school placement was very similar to what I have seen in my placements in Boston. When the students come into the classroom each morning they are expected to hang their coats, lunches, and bags up outside and then sit down in the front of the room on the rug. The kids know the routine very well, and it's very clear that my CT has stressed the importance of coming in quietly from the beginning of the year. If students are misbehaving at this time my CT will just ask them nicely to calm down, but if the problem persists she usually asks the student to move up in front of her.

My second grade classroom had a motto that my CT always reminded the students of: "Choose the right." It could be applied to a lot of things, but much of the time it was applied to the choices that students made about their own behavior. If they were misbehaving my CT would remind them to choose the right and correct their behavior. The motto also applied to when the kids would choose a spot to sit on the front rug. My CT or the full prac would remind them to choose the right and pick a place to sit where they would not be distracted by something or someone else. This seemed to work pretty well, as the students would remind each other to choose the right and took a lot of pride in themselves when they knew they made the right decision.

If problems persisted in my classroom, my CT would often pull the misbehaving student aside and have a talk with them. She used a very calm tone and often asked the student why they were behaving the way they were or how they were feeling. A few kids in my class had ADHD, and I always noticed that my CT could quickly turn around their misbehavior when she added that she knew they were trying really hard. Just knowing that their teaching had faith in them seemed to make a huge difference in the behavior of a lot of the second graders in my class.

These techniques are ones that I know will be very useful in the future when I continue my student teaching in Boston. I hope that I can incorporate my CT's calm demeanor and her ability to relate to students while still holding their respect into my own classroom management techniques as a teacher.

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