Discipline is one of the hardest things to accomplish in the classroom whether it be in a church or a school. It’s hard to remain the calm one, but as a teacher, it is a necessary tool. Let’s look at a few tools that can help in the area of classroom management.
ReDirection: One of the first “go to” tools that we have in discipline is redirecting the student’s attention to dissolve a problem or a potential problem. Unfortunately, there are so many different situations in which this is needed, there is not a clear-cut formula. Redirection can be a whole article by itself. We all want to be a fun teacher but that is not always productive. Since there is not a clear formula for redirection let’s look a list of things we can try.
Hire a Student (well sort of) : I think some people would consider this tip as part of redirection, but I separated it. It is more than redirection, when you give a student a job, you add to their purpose. We all love to feel needed and our students are no different.
Florence Littauer says in her book, Silver Boxes:
- The importance of being an encourager/ or using Teachable moments:
- The child who doesn’t need encouragement is rare.
- The shy child – needs to discover talent and ability.
- The outgoing child – needs affirmation.
- The teacher pleaser – needs to know they are on the right track.
- The disruptive child – is crying for attention and often angry about something that is out of his control.
- The quiet child who just takes it all in – usually has wonderful insight. He needs to know his observations have worth.
I would only add that Proverbs 15:23b says” …and how good is a timely word!”
Follow-through: If you state a rule, you must be able to follow through with the consequences if the rule is broken. Yes, there is always a time for grace, but especially at the beginning of the year, be firm in your follow-through. If you do what you say, the students will come to understand that you do what you say you will do. You follow through out of love for the student to grow and learn will yield respect.
Be Clear Dear: This was included in the last post. You can read more about it here. State the rules in the beginning of the year. Clearly, explain what you expect from students. This is a large prevention step for discipline in the classroom.
More Discipline Ideas
If working in a Christian school or church, or you are a parent, you will find the next short segment helpful. Correct with scripture.
- Correcting with scriptures is one way to show the children that there is a higher authority than you—God.
- God tells us in his Word, the Bible, how we should live every day and that is just one of the things that make it the most wonderful book. He gave us many examples in the Bible through all of the stories.
- Scriptures that we can use are:
- The Bible is our authority – All God’s Words Are True—Psalm 119:160
- Attitude—A cheerful heart is good medicine. Prov. 17:22
- Potty Mouth—Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth… Eph. 4:29
- A fool’s mouth is his undoing, and his lips are a snare to his soul. Prov. 18:7
- Complaining—Give thank in all circumstances. I Thess. 5:18
- Fear—When I am afraid, I will trust in You. Psalm 56:3
- Lying—The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in men who are truthful. Prov. 12:22
- Obedience—Children obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. Eph. 6:1
- Doesn’t want to sing—Sing to Him, sing praise to Him. Ps. 105:2
- Talking too much – The intelligent person restrains his words; and one who keeps a cool head is a man of understanding. Proverbs 17:27
Here are a few other articles on discipline. http://www.nea.org/tools/10-approaches-to-better-discipline.html
Hang in there. Hang on to your sainity. And whatever you do keep singing!!