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					Holly A. Toops
General Methods
May 12, 2007
                               Classroom Management Plan

       For this current semester, I am in an eighth grade Language Arts classroom. Mrs.

Self-Gross has been teaching for seven years now, and her classroom is large and very

decorative. She takes a lot of pride in having a clean, orderly learning space, but she has

also added a little flair by putting up encouragement posters, patriotic banners, and a

quote of the day everyday. Also, there is a guinea pig in her room, and occasionally, she

lets it have the run of the classroom. Of course, the children love this, and as a result of

her efforts, the classroom situation is very relaxed. The children know that the

atmosphere can be playful at times, and the students are allowed to have fun. However,

the children also know when to get serious and to get down to work. Most of the children

are very bright and strive to learn as much as they can. However, like a typical school,

there are some students who are bright but just don’t want to do anything. Also, the

classes have quite a few students with IEPs; I think we have around twenty-six total.

There is one child in particular who can create a challenge. She is not labeled with a

disability, but she can be labeled as the “attention seeker.” She loves the spotlight in the

classroom, and she enjoys it when the other students look to her for humor. Even though

she does occasionally do her work, this student would rather cause trouble to get a laugh

from her neighbor than concentrate on the task at hand. Overall, however, we try not to

let her cause too many disturbances, but she does seem to always be looking for the

attention of someone close to her.

       Because these students are getting ready to go the high school, one of my main

focuses, like my cooperating teacher’s, would be to prepare the students for the
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curriculum at the next level. High school can be such a scary and troubling time for a

young fourteen or fifteen-year-old. I remember being at that age, and I was scared to

death of going to the high school. So, I would want to help them prepare for the journey

ahead. The high school teachers don’t baby anyone because their job is to get students

ready for the outside world. I might make them accountable for getting homework in

without constantly hovering over them, and I will try and get the students prepared by

making them take responsibility of their actions and behavior. Another one of my goals

will be to teach materials that may come up on the ISTEP. Even though I don’t like the

idea of teaching to a test, standardized testing is a crucial part of our school systems these

days. So, I will attempt to teach ISTEP material while making it interesting because I

want my students to be prepared when they get to their sophomore year and take the

ISTEP.

         Even though my goals are fairly realistic, they will not be obtained if I don’t have

a good classroom management plan mapped out. At the beginning of the year, I will

make sure to have some of my most important rules posted. For example, I will list rule

such as “Respect me, your classmates, and yourself,” “Be prepared for class—this means

bring a pencil, paper, and books everyday unless notified,” “Raise your hand before

speaking,” and “Homework and assignments are to be turned in on time.” Also, at the

beginning of the school year, I will send home a copy of all my rules and all my

procedures to be signed by the student and parent/guardian so that I know that both

individuals have seen and reviewed the way I will run my classroom.

         In order to manage my classroom, I will have my desks arranged in a fashion in

which I can have easy access to all students. If a student is special needs and requires
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close proximity to me or another instructor, I will place them in the proper location. But,

I like the idea of having several small clusters of desks with a row of desks in the middle.


For example:           DD              D               DD
                       DD              D               DD
                                       D
Blackboard             DD              D               DD
                       DD              D               DD
                                       D
                       DD              D               DD
                       DD              D               DD

       This example shows how I will be able to have control over the small groups

while keeping the single row of desks from having too much socialization because of the

limited classmate contact. Also, it is very easy to walk around the small clusters of desks

and in front and behind the row of desks.

       In order to keep my classroom running smoothly, I will have a certain set of steps

the students should follow when they enter the room each morning. All of these

procedures will be in my rules sheet at the beginning of the year, and I will also state

what the students are to do at the beginning of each day the first week of school. Like my

Winter Term teacher did, I will have Popsicle sticks with each student’s name on one,

and each morning, I will sit an attendance sticks and bowl in the back of the room.

Whenever the student enters, he or she will put his or her stick in the attendance bowl.

The attendance stick policy will allow me to take attendance without wasting a lot of

class time trying to figure out who is here and who is missing. If a student comes in late,

he or she will be counted tardy and will have to go to the back of the room and sign a

piece of paper stating that he or she was late on a certain day and time and the reason for

being tardy. If the student has a pass, this can be put in a basket next to the tardy sign-in
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so the tardy won’t count against him or her. I will record the tardies after that period is

over. This will all be at the back of the room on a table or desk so that the student doesn’t

block the bell work assignment or interrupt the lesson when he or she comes in.

       After the students put their attendance sticks in the bowl, the students will need to

get their journals out of the designated crate, sit in their assigned seats, and start working

on their bell work/daily journals. The bell work will allow students to get busy working

on something, and this will also help with writing skills since they will be writing almost

every day. In terms of the kind of topics, I will have the students write either a reflective

journal or opinion-based response in their designated bell work notebooks, or they might

have to answer a riddle or write ten sentences using similes or metaphors. The bell work

could also be practice ISTEP questions that will give some students practice if they

haven’t passed the test yet and give the others reinforcement if they have passed it.

Whatever the bell work is, students need to be in their seats doing the assignment or

getting ready to do the work before the bell rings. If they have any questions, they may

ask by raising their hands. Whenever the students are finished, they can put their

notebooks in the crate/box with their period number on the front of it. This bell work

procedure will help with the consistency of the classroom, and it will also help with

autistic children who, if they are in the classroom, can stick with a schedule that they can

get used to in their daily schedule.

       Because this is an English class, I will definitely grade on the grammar, cohesion,

and spelling in the students’ assignments. High school teachers expect their students to

be able to write long research papers and reports with correct mechanics, and I want my

students to get those things down. So, in the bell work, homework, tests, essays, etc., I
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will grade the students on proper writing skills. Also, in order to keep assignments from

being overly difficult, the students can write in pencil or pen, as long as it is legible. This

will keep students from worrying if they don’t have a pencil and will eliminate wasted

class time from students trying to find a pencil.

       If a student is absent, he or she will know to get any work he or she missed in the

“pick-up” tray on my desk. If the student has work to turn in or completes that missed

work, he or she will need to turn it into the “completed” tray beside the pick-up tray.

Students will learn this procedure at the beginning of the year, and it will be their

responsibility to get and make up any work that they miss. In high school and college,

professors don’t really worry about a student getting their assignments if he or she

misses. This type of system will allow students to get some experience in relying on

themselves. Also, since students will know what to do if they are absent ahead of time,

they will not have to ask me what they missed and hold up the rest of the class. This will

keep the class running smoothly and allow me to continue on with a lesson. If a student

misses class for an extended amount of time, then he or she can speak to me after class

and we can set up something for him or her to make up the work.

       When teaching a lesson, I really want to make sure that I have “withitness.” I

love that term, and I have seen many teachers have this while they teach. My own

withitness would allow me to have control over the class while I am leading an activity or

having a group discussion. For example, I will have all my materials, handouts,

transparencies, etc., ready ahead of time. I don’t like disorganization or messiness, and

having all my lesson materials ready before I teach will allow me to concentrate on what

is going on in my classroom with my students. I won’t have to worry about making
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copies or finding a page number at the last minute. Also, this will show to the students

(and my principal when he/she observes me) that I am on top of things, and the students

should be also. I don’t like when people mess around and act lazy, and my organization

skills will come in handy here.

        Another example of this is while I am teaching my lesson or leading a discussion,

I will make sure to “watch” the room. Eye contact is so important in an educational

setting, and I want to make sure my students know this. If a student is speaking to me, I

will make eye contact with him or her to let him or her know that I am engaged and

listening. Also, if I am speaking, I will make eye contact with students while I scan the

entire room. Making eye contact with all the students will allow each student to feel a

part of the class and also let them know that I see everything!

        If students have good behavior, I want to give them rewards to reinforce that

behavior. I know that many schools don’t like having food in classrooms, but I don’t see

anything wrong with a class party every now and then. If my class has behaved well and

have not had to have any write-ups or office visits, a pizza or ice cream party could

reinforce this good behavior. Also, I love telling students what they are doing right. In

high school, I always sought praise because I thought praise was the greatest of rewards.

If a student is doing something positive, then I will tell them so. I will make sure to

praise the specific action, not a trait or characteristic of the student. But, if students see

that I give positive feedback, hopefully they will strive to get this reward. Like Lee

Canter’s video explained, if I verbally praise a group of students for getting their books

out and getting quiet, this may catch the attention of those students who are being

disruptive. I don’t want to just attack a few students who don’t get their books out right
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away, but I don’t want them taking their sweet time. If these students see me rewarding

some other students for getting ready for the lesson, then they might also seek this

positive reinforcement.

       However, in case of behavior that isn’t acceptable in my classroom, I will have

rules and consequences. My rules will be stated around my classroom and also in the

rules sheet that is passed out at the beginning of the year. If a student does cause trouble

in class like excessive talking, refusal to work, fighting, unacceptable language, etc., I

will briefly mention that student’s name in the middle of a sentence, so that they know I

am aware of the situation. After this, if the negative behavior persists, I will only

verbally warn twice to stop the behavior. If he or she continues with the behavior, I

won’t say anything; I will just hand a slip (like below) to the student and he or she will

have to sign it, proving that he or she were acting inappropriately. I will record to whom

I give a slip so that I won’t forget that I did give one out or accuse someone of not turning

in a slip when I didn’t give him or her one.

Example:


 The following is a WARNING. Please print your Name, today’s Date, and the Period.
 Circle all the offences that apply. IF YOU FAIL TO TURN THIS INTO ME, YOU
 WILL RECEIVE AN AUTOMATIC DETENTION. Upon receiving the 3rd warning,
 you will receive a detention or trip to the office.
 Name_________________________________Date__________________Period_______

 Circle all that apply: Rude             Excessive Talking              Refusal to Work

                          Fighting              Insubordination         Disruptive

                          Unacceptable Language         Destructive to Property/Supplies

 Other:________________________________________________________
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       I know that eighth graders are very social beings, and I want them to feel free to

express themselves in class. However, after the reach a certain point, they are out of line,

and this is where I start handing out warnings. Students will know that after the third

paper warning, they will have to deal with the consequences. I feel that after briefly

mentioning their name, two verbal warnings, and then three other warnings, the student

should have some kind of negative reinforcement or punishment.

       The terms of consequences depends on the transgression. If a student does cause

trouble and they get three paper warnings, they will be able to choose their own

consequence. The list of consequences will be writing a 1,500-2,000 word essay, setting

up his or her own parent/student/teacher conference after school, having an in-school

detention, or cleaning the school’s hallways every day for a week after school. I believe

that if a student chooses the behavior, he or she should choose the consequence

afterwards. However, if these consequences do not work, more extreme measures will be

taken. If a student is constantly causing trouble, he or she will see the principal or vice-

principal, and they could work out the situation together. Also, I will be in contact with

the all students’ parents/guardians. Staying in contact with the parents will give me

insight into why the students act they way they do and how they can help their own

children. If a student has been causing trouble one week, I will call or email the

parents/guardians to let them know what is going on. On the other hand, I also want to

call parents for good behavior. If I’m always contacting the parents about bad behavior,

then this seems like I might be constantly picking on the students, which is not my

intention. So, every week, I will call three students’ parents and let them know that their

children did something right one week, either academically or behaviorally.
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        Even though I think my classroom management plan seems impenetrable, I might

need a contingency, or back-up, plan. The parts of my plan that deals with rewards and

consequences might not work in a real classroom setting, and so I need to be prepared for

this.

        For my reward system, I might need to change a few things. I would like to give

pizza, ice cream, or cake parties in my classroom for good behavior. However, some

schools don’t allow food in any classroom other than the FACS classes. At my high

school, we were allowed to have food in our classrooms, but I think this was because the

floors were tile, not carpet like most classrooms are today. Custer Baker, where I was

placed this semester, had carpeted floors, and they didn’t have parties like we did when I

was in school. Many administrators don’t approve of food in classrooms, and so I would

have to follow their rules. Also, some of my student’s might be diabetic or have food

allergies. I don’t want my students to feel left out if they can’t participate in the

classroom fun. In cases like these, instead of food parties, I could give the students a day

of games. The students could play “Seven-Up,” “Four Corners,” or “Catch Phrase.” We

could also play “BINGO,” and the words could be vocabulary words that we are studying

that week. This would allow the students to still have fun and be rewarded for good

behavior, and then no one has to be left out.

        Another part of this plan that might need a back-up is my consequences. Even

though I like having the student pick the consequences in the case of bad behavior, my

administrators and my students’ parents may not agree with my policy. In this case, I

will have to just administer the consequences as I see fit, and if a student misbehaves, the

seriousness of the behavior will determine the consequence. Also, some parents might
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not like having their children cleaning my room as a choice. I believe this consequence

will allow the students to learn that cleaning a school everyday isn’t easy work, and so

this will teach them to appreciate their surroundings and the janitorial staff. However, if

a parent doesn’t like it, I will have to change this consequence into a different one or just

eliminate that option.

       Even though some of my plans are my own ideas, I have been in school for nearly

fifteen years and have observed at other schools too. Mrs. Nancy Durham, Ms. Erin

Tracy, and Mrs. Lisa Self-Gross may not be famous experts but they do have experience

with teaching, and I wanted to give them the credit they deserve. I had Mrs. Durham in

school and have observed Ms. Tracy and Mrs. Self-Gross, and I incorporated some of

their own classroom management ideas into my plan. However, I have also used some of

Lee Canter’s ideas involving rewards and consequences. We have seen several videos of

Canter’s policies, and I have used and adapted these into my plan.

       I used several of Will Weber’s approaches to classroom management, and these

include Behavior Management/Modification Approach, Instructional Approach, some

Authoritarian Approach, and Social/Emotional Approach, which all combines into my

own “Cookbook Approach.” In terms of the Behavior approach, I borrowed a lot of the

ideas. For example, I applied the power levels of rewards, the “Catch them being good”

reward, written contracts (rules and procedures), individual punishments and whole class

rewards, and designing my plan so I get input from the home. I used several ideas from

the Instructional Approach, such as arranging classroom to ensure proximity to each

student, identifying efficient housekeeping procedures, quickly scanning the room,

posting five rules of behavior, practicing “withitness,” and communicating with parents.
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I really like that approach and its ideas. However, I also used some authoritarian tips like

making eye-contact with students, posting rules, sending rules home to be signed, and

communicating with parents of troubled children. From the Social/Emotional Approach,

I applied ideas like the students having some choice in consequences, many ego-boosting

activities such as rewards, and student-led parent conferences. All of these professionals,

ideas, and approaches contributed to my classroom management plan, and I believe that

this plan will be beneficial in my own classroom someday.
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                                     Works Cited

Authoritarian Approach to Classroom Management.

Classroom Management Via the Behavior Management Approach.

Holly Toops, Franklin College Student.

Instructional Approach to Classroom Management.

Lee Canter’s Assertive Discipline Videos.

Ms. Erin Tracy, Language Arts Teacher, Whiteland High School, 9th & 10th Grades.

Mrs. Lori Self-Gross, Language Arts Teacher, Custer Baker Middle School, 8th Grade.

Mrs. Nancy Durham, Language Arts/Speech/Yearbook Teacher, South Ripley Jr.-Sr.

       High School, 7-12 Grades.

Social/Emotional Approach to Classroom Management.

Will Weber’s Categories of Approaches to Classroom Management.

				
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