"Children need love the most when they deserve it the least."
The videos above are based on the book The Power of Positive Discipline by Jane Nelsen, Ed.D. I was first introduced to her books through one of my classroom management courses at Texas State University. Not only do her ideas and principles make sense, but I've found they have yet to fail my students! Consequently, they will serve as the foundation of our classroom behavior plan.
Classroom Meetings: Classroom meetings are HUGE! Not only are they much of what the Positive Discipline in the Classroom book is based on, but they are the most effective measure I've witnessed in regard to behavior management and character building among students. It will be our goal to hold 15 min. meetings each day within our own classroom. The video below provides a wonderful explanation of how our classroom meetings will be conducted.
Classroom Rules: Our classroom rules will be established as a class on the first day of school and will also serve as our first classroom meeting agenda topic. A classroom should be viewed as a community because we will be working together all year as a team. I want to know how the students would like to be treated, and I'd like to communicate with them how I would like to be treated as well. Once we've agreed on our "Classroom Contract", we will all sign it and I will update the site.
Rewards and Consequences: If you've watched the videos above, you may remember Dr. Nelson saying that punishment is not effective and that it suggests children should "pay" for their misbehavior. While this is true, consequences, on the other hand, address both positive and negative actions. I've found the following methods to work beautifully in past experiences, and I trust this year will be no different...
- Tickets: Students are presented with ticket stubs when seen engaged in sought after behavior. These tickets are given out frequently throughout the day, thus presenting ample opportunity for each student to obtain as many as their own actions permit (turning in homework on time; participating in class discussions; walking quietly in line; etc.) Each week at the designated time, students can "cash in" their tickets for rewards (which vary in ticket price and will be decided on during our first class meeting). Rewards in the past have included things such as 10 minutes of computer time, pencils, stickers, prize box, lunch with the teacher, etc.