What is Psychodynamic approach to classroom management?

                                                                                 Freud  S. Freud (1856-1939)


     When thinking about psychodynamic theory, the first person that comes to my mind is Sigmund Freud. Freud was a leader in the field of Psychodynamic theory when he created the concepts of ID (unconscious thought processes focusing on biological forces geared toward pleasure), the EGO (conscious thought processes focusing on reality and the personality), and the SUPEREGO (which is split into what we actually think of ourselves and our morals and values). This theory deals with the thought processes and emotional states that go through an individual's mind. The thoughts can be conscious or unconscious.  Psychodynamic theory is the essential part of ourselves. It helps to explain what drives us to our actions and how we justify those actions. It is dynamic, because our thought patterns are constantly changing. 



On being human - emotions

    As human beings, we experience emotions all the time. Sometimes we can experience more than one emotion at a time and even when we don't realize it. In a classroom, teachers need to be in tune to their emotions and what drives them to act and react to situations. Emotions are dynamic and constantly change over any given amount of time. It is how we choose to deal with our emotions that will determine the type of teacher we want to be. Keeping this in mind, we want our students to learn to be aware of their emotions as well. As we are all human beings, we need an outlet for the good and bad emotions that we experience. Learning the differences and understanding the best way to deal with our emotions will prepare us for the future.  


Two interesting sites on emotions:



Multiple Intelligences
  H. Gardner (1943-)

     Multiple intelligences are also an important factor to consider in the classroom. Howard Gardner created the multiple intelligences which consist of:

  • Interpersonal (working with people)
  • Intrapersonal (working with self)
  • Kinesthetic (working with the body)
  • Linguistic(working with words)
  • Logical (working with numbers & reasoning)
  • Naturalist (working with nature)
  • Spatial (working with visuals)

Multiple Intelligences

     And a possible intelligence:

  •  Existential (working with philosophical issues)
     Keeping these in mind, a teacher must know that students learn differently. Taking a multiple intelligence survey can help a teacher to identify their strengths and weaknesses. There is a link to a survey below. The results can be quite interesting. Once taken, we should all strive to improve our weaker areas.

Multiple Intelligence Survey


Concluding remarks about the psychodynamic model

     The psychodynamic model is perfect for the classroom. It considers individuals in whole parts. Emotions, intelligences, and thoughts all make up a human being. In the classroom, it is important for a teacher to be aware of their own thought processes and emotions. By doing so, they will be able to respond to classroom management needs more effectively and more professionally. Realizing that each student is made up of their own psychodynamic processes which also help a teacher to empathize with students and to provide individualized instruction when needed.