Communicate high expectations for behavior [E-4]

Illustrations are grouped by the proficiency that they best bring to life.

We would like to communicate our deep appreciation to these teachers who are allowing us to learn from their experiences.

Explanation

It can sometimes feel like student misbehavior is a direct affront to us personally, causing us to let our feelings affect how we respond to students. This often happens because we take our challenging work very seriously and feel personally hurt when students are disruptive and interfere with our plans that we worked really hard to prepare.

Solution

Be conscious of how your emotions are impacting the way you view and react to different students. It is crucial to refrain from treating students as ‘obstacles’ to overcome, rather than learners who need our dedication and support in reaching success. If you have students who persistently display disruptive misbehavior, continually reflect on what is causing this in order to determine how best to address the situation. Also, commit to respond to all students, regardless of their history of behavior, in a consistent and fair way that upholds high expectations for their behavior.

Explanation

We don’t like the idea of being assertive because we think that it requires us to be tyrants or authoritarians, responding to misbehavior in a loud, harsh, and rude manner. This mindset leads us in one of two directions: (a) we feel uncomfortable with the idea of being assertive, causing us to be more permissive of misbehavior, or (b) we may not like it, but we reluctantly accept that we need to be overly aggressive to effectively manage misbehavior, causing us to treat students disrespectfully

Solution

Asserting authority means responding to students in a firm, positive, and respectful way that upholds high expectations for their behavior. It does not require you to be caustic, demeaning, or unsupportive toward students. It can be difficult to develop a confident, commanding tone that is strong yet respectful. To help, view examples of what being assertive means and looks like, and use tips for how to do this effectively on the assertive page

Explanation

We can sometimes find ourselves running our classes as if the goal of strong management is to exert “control” over students so that they unquestionably obey our every command. This happens because we want to be confident and commanding so that students will listen. If we only focus on classroom management, however, we will likely forget that student learning depends on more than just good behavior.

Solution

Getting students to behave is not an end in of itself, but rather a means to a greater goal: focusing students on working hard and learning. Good behavior is a start, but don’t let it be your primary focus. You also need to plan strong lessons (P-3) and present content in engaging, compelling ways (E-1). Doing this will motivate students to listen because they see the value in achieving (I-2), not simply because they fear your consequences.