Sunday, November 09, 2008

Tips on Creating an Inviting Classroom Climate


I work hard in creating and maintaining a positive climate in my classroom. I remember when I was in high school when I behaved properly in a well organized and clean classroom and just didn't care when I was in a messy classroom. Now as a teacher, I have not forgotten these things, and try not to be the teacher that I dislike...

My classroom speaks how I nurture my students. Even regular ed students want to remain in my classroom, which is a good thing, they said learning is fun in my classroom and they get to be rewarded for doing a good job. My classroom environment tells my students that they are achievers, competent, and successful...and they feel this way when they are with me.

Here are some tips that I got which are very effective:

- always remember the adage "Students do not care how much you know until they know how much you care". We earn respect only by showing respect; we gain trust by trusting. Develop a student-centered, rather than subject-centered, classroom

- make a conscious effort to get to know the good things about your students. Publicly and privately acknowledge their achievements outside of your class.

- communicate your expectations clearly, both for academic tasks as well as behavioral norms. Successful teachers genuinely communicate that they expect all students to succeed.

- plan lessons that offer more instructional techniques than the talking head in the classroom.

- recognize, encourage, and reinforce positive behaviors and achievements.

- don't be afraid to smile. A gentle smile conveys warmth, acceptance, and caring.

- never use sarcasm or ridicule when talking to students. It accomplishes nothing permanently positive.

- find special occassions to celebrate. Let students decorate the bulletin board or post their excellent works themselves.

- don't be afraid to make learning fun. I can be a vampire, or Mrs. Santa Claus on occassions.

- publicize your students' successes to the the entire school community, parents and everyone. Check out our class website: http://digitalanthology.blogspot.com/ .

- and finally: focus on your students' strengths, not their weaknesses.

1 comment:

Danielle D. said...

I absolutely loved reading this blog! Everything that you have stated I completely agreed with. I truly feel that the atmosphere of the room greatly impacts the overall feeling in it. Everyone wants to be in a fun and welcoming environment, and not a dull or messy one. One of my favorite points you made was "students do not care how much you know until they know how much you care." I will never forget a time a was doing my student teaching and there was a very stubborn student who refused to do anything. The teacher was getting so frustrated and threatening him with detention, suspension, everything. I went up to him and asked him what the problem was. We talked for a little bit and he told me that he really did not know how to do the work and didn't want to ask for help because the teacher would get mad. I helped him work through some of it, and told him to never be afraid to ask me for help. From that day on he was never obstinate towards me again. He saw that I respected him and he in turn respected me. Sadly though, a week after I go transferred to another classroom he got suspended for not doing as he was asked. Respecting your students and showing them that you care is one of the most important and valuable things I have learned through teaching!

Promethean Planet

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