- Am I in the right room?
I will be at the entrance of the room on the first day of school to introduce myself and the class. I will also have the overhead projector with a description of the class on the screen for all students to see with the room number present as well as my name.
- Where am I supposed to sit?
I will have the students take seats wherever they want. I will then begin taking attendance. Once attendance is over, I will begin assigning seats by alphabetical last names. This way students should not feel left out if they are not popular and I will hopefully break up any “friends” or “cliques” through the use of this technique. Exceptions would be for students with vision or hearing problems.
- What are the rules for this classroom?
A hard copy of rules will be posted on the bulletin board for students to see. I will tell them where they are after seat assignments. I will go over the rules orally the first day of class. I will also provide them with a hard copy of the rules. I will also have a hard copy to be sent home to their parents for their signatures. Once I see signatures, I will check them off my student administrative log. I will also have extra hard copies of rules for new students who enter my classroom during various times of the year. They will also have to have their parents sign the rules and return to me.
- What will I be doing this year?
To get the students attention and focused on coursework, classroom procedures will be taught to them over the first two weeks such that students will understand what is expected of them when they come into the room, how to ask questions, classroom etiquette, restroom procedures, testing procedures, leaving the class at the end of the bell, and how to do homework and projects. Once students understand your procedures, learning will be easier for them and you will not be constantly forced to go over disciplinary issues all year long due to misunderstandings or student perceptions on how much they can do before an issue arises.
I will also provide an agenda for the week to the class on the board as well as outline the objectives for the class for the year.
- How will I be graded?
This can be explained through the use of grading criteria based on day work (homework), class project, tests and quizzes. Student should understand that their grades are a cumulative effort of all three grading criteria and that each aspect of the criteria they will be graded on will provide them with an understanding of the subject matter that is given to them. Explain that grades are an after effect of the materials they have worked on during the course much as in the real world your evaluations are based on everything you do at your job or occupation.
- Who am I as a person?
Give the students a brief background of your educational background and previous work experiences. Emphasize your years outside the educational system and let them know that the many uses the outside world has for the materials you are teaching and how valuable it is for them to understand that. To take an interest in students, I will interject questions to them in an equitable manner and do my utmost to treat them as a person. In addition, I feel it’s important to lay out my rules and procedures and apply them diligently in the first two weeks of the class to set the framework for how I am going to conduct my class.
- Will the teacher treat me as a human being?
Emphasize equity and mutuality in your classroom. Set the rules, procedures, grading criteria and hold steady to them. Students are in the classroom to learn and not have a good buddy there to teach them. Students want an orderly classroom environment and do want a disruptive classroom that is out of control. Knowing you as a teacher who will step up and take care of issues in a fair manner will earn your respect from them. You will also set the pace and format for your classroom environment and not have to constantly re-emphasize procedures.