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Teaching Strategies | Classroom Management | Back to School | December 13, 2023

8 Strategies to Establish a Positive Classroom Management System

8 Strategies to Establish a Positive Classroom Management System

Classroom management is a critical component of student learning. Without positive classroom management, effective teaching and learning cannot happen. Every teacher and class is unique, so classroom management strategies cannot be one-size-fits-all. The guiding principles in this article will help novice and veteran teachers utilize positive classroom management for better student learning outcomes. This article also includes a Classroom Environment Self-Assessment for teachers to help evaluate their current management practices.

Benefits of Positive Classroom Management

The ways that teachers prepare and implement classroom management directly correlate to how well their students perform both socially and academically. Positive, workable Classroom Management can be one of the most challenging things for teachers to develop, but it's one of the most important things to do when it comes to effective teaching and learning. To create a great environment for teachers and students, everyone needs to feel safe, comfortable, and confident. Putting thought, time, and effort into good Classroom Management has tremendous payoff for everyone throughout the entire school year.

Develop Effective Classroom Management

Positive classroom management is invisible, but takes time and effort to establish. Positive classroom management helps teachers build positive classroom communities. It also helps teachers prevent or mitigate disruptive behaviors and distractions. Want to know how it's done? Here are eight strategies for anyone who wants to develop effective Classroom Management.

Set clear classroom routines and expectations

Decide upon the routines and behavior expectations you want your students to follow. Make them clear, positive, and specific. For example, instead of "no talking" you can say "work quietly during assignments."

Teach routines and expectations early and often

Take the time to teach your routines and expectations. It will make everything you implement that much easier. Also, role play situations to show what to do and what not to do. Make a PowerPoint or video of your routines and expectations so that if you need to revisit them (as reminders, or for new students), you have them ready. It is time well spent, and you will reap the rewards in your classroom throughout the year.

Determine how you will reward positive behavior

Rewards can be individual or earned by the class. Rewards do not have to cost a lot of money, or even any money at all. For example, students can earn five minutes of white-board time, access to a special chair or class job, extra recess, and so on.

Reinforce positive behaviors early and often

Focus on reinforcing positive behaviors. In order to shape behavior, you need to reward or praise early and often. When thinking about your day, pick one thing you are going to reinforce that day. If you are consistent with this reinforcement, you will gradually be able to do it less and less often, and positive behaviors will become automatic.

Be specific with your praise 

When you reinforce positive behavior, be specific with your praise. Don't just say, "Good job," but say, "Good job cleaning up your desk and keeping it neat." Being specific really helps students understand that they are doing what is expected and reminds other students what they should be doing, too! By following these five steps you will set the stage for a positive and productive school year!

Consider your classroom environments

Your classroom design matters. Design your classroom in a way that allows you to move through and monitor the space. The environments in your classroom, both social and physical, will impact student behavior and, ultimately, student learning. And of course, increasing engagement with content means that students are on task and learning, reducing distractions and disruptions.

Invest in relationships

Remember that highly effective classroom management strategies are based on building relationships with and among all the students in the classroom. Prosocial activities are known to have a big payoff for classroom management. Uncover student interests and get to know them on an individual basis.

Communicate with families

Take the time to establish a good rapport with the parents and guardians of your students. The process of recruiting the support of families can take a good deal of effort and time, but it is well worth it! Tell families that you want to establish partnerships with them so that their children can have a successful year in your class. Explain your classroom management system so they understand how your class is being operated. Families can then support students in making responsible decisions and contribute to the overall goal of a positive learning environment.

Reflection as a Classroom Management Tool

Since every teacher and class is unique, no one specific style of management is better than another. Teachers must find the system that works for them. Therefore, reflection is an important tool for teachers wanting to establish a positive classroom management system. Teachers must also be open and unafraid to challenge beliefs about classroom management and take risks in implementing new strategies that may work for them and their unique classrooms.

Positive classroom management ensures an environment that fosters student learning and makes all members of the learning community feel safe, comfortable, and confident. Despite obvious benefits, establishing effective classroom management can be a challenge for both novice and veteran teachers. Implement the eight strategies in this article and utilize the self-assessment for positive classroom management in your own classroom.

Author Bio:

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Amy Zoque

Amy Zoque has been teaching for 18 years and is currently Magnet Coordinator at STEM Magnet School. She and her husband have two wonderful children. Amy’s passion for education stems from the idea that EVERY student can learn; all we need to do is find the key. Amy enjoys watching international soccer, supporting her daughter in musical theater, and going on road trips with her son. She lives in southern California and looks forward to every vacation as an opportunity to make family memories.

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