Discipline Paragraphs Discipline paragraphs will be the primary method of dealing with any disruptive issues that arise in class. I am aware of the old-school connotations of such a policy. The system works well in maintaining a class that is focused on learning and students do not often miss class time for discipline issues. They also set clear expectations for students so that we have limited disruptions. Many of you will never need to write a paragraph this year; simply just do what you have probably been doing for the last seven years of your schooling. Neatly write the paragraph(s) assigned to you. It is due at the beginning of class the following day. It is your responsibility to turn it in; I may not always remember to ask for it. Make sure there is a complete heading on your paper, just as if it is a regular assignment. You should copy the paragraphs on a blank sheet of paper. Your parents must sign the paper for the paragraphs to be valid. If you do not turn in the paragraphs, they double each day. For example, if you were assigned two paragraphs and do not turn them in, you then owe four paragraphs. The next day, you will owe eight. If you continue to not turn them in, you parents will be notified and/or you will receive a referral. Gum, Food, Candy, Seeds, Etc.: In spite of the preponderance of regulations opposing mastication of substances, I repudiated the sovereignty of the governing personages and chose to violate the rules, thereby procuring the resulting consequences of inscribing this paragraph. In other words, I (fill in the blank…chewed gum, ate candy, etc), so now I am writing, and writing, and writing, and writing… Tardies: A little late to class is too late to class. I need to be in my seat with my materials ready and ready to work on the Problem of the Day if there is one when the bell rings. If I need to sharpen my pencil or turn in some paragraphs, it is my responsibility to do these things as soon as possible when I enter the classroom. It is a pain to be on time when I would rather talk to my friends, but I have a responsibility to myself and the rest of the class to be on time. Throwing, Tossing, Etc.: It is hard for me to refrain from throwing objects in the classroom. I have a bad habit of tossing things. Maybe I got these paragraphs because I threw something to someone instead of walking over to them and handing it to them. I also could have got them because I couldn’t resist throwing something in the trashcan instead of walking over to the trashcan. This can be an interruption to the learning process because it may catch students’ attention. Even though throwing paper may be harmless, throwing some objects may be unsafe, so I need to not throw anything at all. Lying: Do you remember back to elementary school when kids used to yell “Liar, liar, pants on fire, hang yourself on a telephone wire?” This was certainly an inappropriate saying due to the reference to hanging oneself, but the point was that it is not a good thing to lie. You have probably been taught from a very early age that lying is wrong, and may have even been punished for it. Even though you may have been joking, lying in a classroom situation is a waste of productive class time and cannot be tolerated. Talking: I have a problem with talking when I shouldn’t be. I have before school, passing time, lunch, and after school to socialize with my friends, so that is when I should talk with my friends. Often times it is appropriate to talk with other students in my group if we are working on an assignment, but I got this paragraph for talking at inappropriate times. I should realize that when Mr. Moule is taking scores, he needs it to be absolutely quiet and that he has told us many times that it is his pet peeve for us to talk during that time. Incessant talking by students is probably the most common behavior problem that most teachers see amongst their students, so I will try to do my part to stop. Disrespect: Aretha Franklin made a song about it, rap artists have changed the meaning of it, and many people try to demand it. Showing respect is very important in having positive relationships with people. Being disrespectful should not be part of the classroom environment at all. This includes students being respectful to students, students being respectful to the teacher, and the teacher being respectful to the students. I was assigned this paragraph today for being disrespectful in class and I will try to be more respectful in the future. Materials: I know that I am supposed to bring all of the expected materials to class every day. Whether it is a day before a holiday, the day after a test, or an irregular schedule day, the requirements for materials do not change. I am choosing to hamper the educational process by not being properly prepared for class. I cause problems for myself and the class when I don’t have my materials ready. Today, I came to class without (fill in the blank). I will get better at bringing my materials to class in the future. Doing Nothing: When a teacher calls a student name or asks them to get on task, a common response from students is, “I’m not doing anything.” Well, that just may be the problem; they are doing nothing when they are supposed to be working on their assignment. Today, I got assigned paragraphs because I was doing nothing. If I am sitting in class day after day and not doing what is asked of me, I am not going to learn very much. Furthermore, if the teacher has asked me to get to work and I do not, I am not following the rules and it is considered insubordination and could be grounds for a referral. If I cannot find better things to do with my time, I can at least keep myself busy by doing paragraphs. Bathroom: Despite the fact that I am in middle school and have been instructed to use the restroom during lunch or passing periods or before or after school, I had to interrupt my learning today to use the restroom. I used my bathroom pass already and gave up an opportunity to earn extra credit. To make matters worse, my teacher is assigning me paragraphs as a trade for my interrupting the class to use the restroom.
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