Classroom management is essential because it is directly correlated with students’ ability to learn and the teacher’s capability to impart knowledge. Having a classroom management plan in place can ensure the classroom environment is effective, engaging and children receive maximum learning benefit. It takes a lot of effort to ensure the plan is successful, but persistence is the key! The groundwork for an effective classroom management plan must be strong, and it also must be implemented accurately to create a solid foundation for learning.
What exactly is a classroom management plan?
A classroom management plan is a set of solid guidelines in place that sets clear expectations for every student. It is a combination of policies, layouts, methods, procedures, rules and instructions that both educators and students will practice in the classroom. For teachers, the plan ensures children’s learning goals can be met without much disruption, whilst for children, they must understand and follow the classroom rules set to enhance their learning.
It can be hard teaching with constant disruption and no guidelines in place, as this can cause quite a bit of commotion. Therefore, if all aspects of the classroom work proficiently together, this will provide more educational value to the children’s learning.
What makes a good classroom management plan?
When developing your management plan, there are a few factors to keep in mind:
-Keep it Simple
The plan doesn’t need to be overly complicated. Keep it simple by knowing you may not be able to control all the external factors, but you can manage situations better if you don’t make things difficult for yourself. It can be as simple as just rules and consequences to follow.
-Tailored according to children needs
All children have different needs and learning capabilities. Some things might work for teachers whilst others can be a disaster! Take time to understand the children and what teaching style they respond to better.
-Re-evaluate and make changes
Similar to the above point, no ‘one management plan fits all. Every month or two, sit down and evaluate what is working well. You may need to tweak a few things to ensure things run more smoothly in the classroom.
-Don’t make promises you can’t keep
Make sure the plan is practical and you can implement every aspect into the daily schedule. Children will quickly lose trust if you promise things and don’t deliver.
-Invest the most time at the beginning of the year
You don’t have to teach students all the rules on the first day itself. However, if you invest time in detailed teaching at the beginning of the school year, things will run much more smoothly and will save you from extra stress and frustration later.
External Factors to consider when designing the management plan
Teachers must understand that the management plan does not come into action immediately. It takes patience to set up the classroom, implement the guidelines, and teach them to students.
A school classroom management plan should clearly hold children accountable for their own behaviour without the teacher having to yell or scold. This gives children the responsibility to make their own choices.
Both educators and students play a fundamental role in how the plan functions and is managed. Teachers should also model the behaviour they expect from the children so students can then follow through. Children have the liability of following the rules set. Parents may also be involved if regular intervention is needed.
Every aspect of the classroom adds value to children’s learning. The learning space should be warm, welcoming, educational, and de-cluttered. The classroom layout, including the arrangement of desks, access to materials and overall functionality of the room, plays a huge role in children’s learning.
Step by Step guide to implementing the Classroom Management Plan
Step 1: Identify goals and objectives
Start by defining the goals you want to set for the whole year. Brainstorm the purpose of the classroom management plan and what you wish to achieve. Consider the abilities and needs of individual students in your class and any concerns you may have that impact your overall goals. This way, you can adjust your teaching style depending on the students. Also, during the year, you can modify the plan to prioritize and rearrange the goals that are more important to achieve whilst taking time to progress through other objectives.
Step 2: Set clear expectations
You may even decide to allow children to contribute to the rules so they can share their input to the classroom expectations. Allowing children to take ownership and have a voice helps develop their confidence and gives them a sense of accountability to follow the rules they have set. A few examples of rules include: keeping hands to yourself, being kind to others, raising your hand to speak and respecting the teacher and classmates.
Step 3: Consider school policies
Ensure that you factor in different school policies that are already in place. You can use the schools’ rules as a guideline to create your own classroom management plan. This assures that there is consistency amongst different classes in the same school. Therefore, when children move up classes during their entire school life, there is some uniformity between other teachers.
Step 4: Implement the plan and direct children’s behaviour
Explain to the children what the rules are. Children must fully understand and comprehend what is expected of them. Ensure you have clear communication with the children and repeat rules if necessary. The next phase is to guide, model and direct children’s behaviour to create a more positive environment. Be aware it will take time, but you need to remain consistent when implementing the regulations. Teachers may find it challenging, but it’s important to follow through with things you have said and try not to get emotional about it. You can use ourpersonal rewards chart for positive behavior management.
Step 5: Assess the plan and modify if necessary
It’s essential to understand that not all plans are perfect. You may have both good and bad days. Recognize what is working well and what might need some altering. It is a good habit to evaluate the plan regularly. Identify which learning objectives have been achieved and which ones may need more attention.
Whether you are teaching in early childhood, middle school or high school, managing a class full of children with different temperaments can be quite a challenge. Therefore, behaviour management is an essential part of teaching. As a result, developing a classroom management plan can ensure children’s learning is optimized, and learning objectives are achieved. Once your plan is in place, it will be much easier to handle recurring situations as they come up. Be assured, it does take a lot of time, patience and constant prompting for the classroom management plan to be effective.