Thursday, August 15, 2013

Teacher Week - Taming the Wild!

Classroom management! Oh, how I love classroom management! I'll tell ya, if you don't set those expectations and routines right away, you will be in for an adventure in the classroom! Half (or maybe even more) of having a successful classroom is by managing it correctly!

Of course, I'm not a super expert. This is only my third year of teaching. But I'd like to think I have it down pretty well, especially when everyone is crowding the hallway trying to get to the multipurpose room for an assembly, and my class is the only one that's walking in a straight line and silent. Makes me feel so proud!

Here is what I use:

Individual Student Behavior - Clip Chart
Love my clip chart! I've used it for two years now and it's been working wonders! After using it for a month, I usually like to add another section above "Outstanding". It usually goes with my classroom theme. "Rising Star" for our star theme, "Top Banana" for our monkey theme, and this year, "Outstanding Owl" for our owl theme. It's a super privilege when you reach the special section because not many people typically get that high up!

Everyone starts off on "Ready to Learn" at the beginning of the day. Clips (labeled by student numbers) move up or down based on student behavior (or responsible choices). It's actually much easier to move up than it is to move down (I typically give a verbal warning before moving a clip down). You don't look at the final result until the end of the school day. The students keep track of where they end up in their "Progress Monitoring Calendar" (I don't use the word behavior because then it just becomes a behavior only chart and I've had some parents complain before) which is in their homework folder for parents to see. They also get stickers to put on their sticker charts (located in their pencil boxes) based on where they end up. One sticker for "Good Day", two stickers for "Great Job", three stickers for "Outstanding", and three stickers AND a pencil for "Outstanding Owl".

For the last two years, when the kids filled up their sticker chart, they got to visit the treasure chest. This year, however, I am getting rid of my treasure chest and using Mel's Reward Coupons. I'm excited to try them out!

Class Behavior - Coin Jar

Made this on Word and used our poster maker at school to make it into a poster. Then I laminated it so it can be used over and over again.

This coin jar is used a little differently every year. The original intention was to do a five minute check-in at the end of the day and reflect on how the class performed as a whole. What kind of day did the whole class have?
However, that only worked out during my first year and even so, we didn't get to check in every day. During my second year of teaching, we never seemed to have time for an end of the day check-in. Instead, we did our check in after Daily Five. We would check in and reflect on how we did as a class on following the expectations during Daily Five (reading silently, staying on task, voice level, etc) and give ourselves coins based on that. I actually liked that because it allowed the students to reflect on their own progress as being independent learners, but also on how they worked together as a class to accomplish the tasks. Plus, we were able to check-in every day. I'm not sure what the coin jar will be used for this year. I am going to start Readers Workshop this year so maybe it will be used to reflect on that. Finally, once the coin jar is completely filled (which usually takes a long time), we decide on a prize. The last two years, the coin jar has been conveniently filled (or timed?) close to my birthday so we had a pajama party to celebrate the completion of the coin jar and my birthday. 

Okay, once again, I am talking waaaay too much! Glad you made it through another long post! :D


  1. I love the idea of using the reward coupons! I have wish listed it!

    Teaching Maths with Meaning

    1. I'm excited to try them out this year! :)