Physical Environment

If you visit any supermarket, gym or club, you realize how well private business understands the influence of the physical environment on our behavior. A classroom should be carefully planned and organized, comfortable and pleasant with a feeling of student identify and ownership.The three key points to consider when planning a classroom are:
1. Seating arrangement
2. Placement of students
3. Room decoration and organization

Placement of Students:
Where you place individual students can be a significant influence of how they interact in the classroom and their work behavior. For example.
1. Seat students with behavioral problems close to your teaching area.
2. Separate students with behavior problems.
3. Seat positive models near students with behavior problems.
4. Seat a class "helper" near students with learning difficulties.
5. Seat individual students who have shown they cannot work cooperative at individual desks.
6. Ensure that students with vision or hearing problems are sufficiently close to the teaching area.

teacher_big_apple_md_wht.gifHow to Turn Around Students Who are Not Behaving Appropriately?

Les Canter's book, Classroom Management for Academic Success has a strong list of suggestions within its first five chapters that provide real world strategies to regaining control of a class. It provides the steps for creating a classroom environment that provides the basis for academic success. Here are some key pointers.

1. Pinpoint when the disruptive behavior stops the learning. Be totally honest when does it happen in the
Instructional Setting?
_Entering the class
_Beginning of the class when attendance is being taken
_During the do-now
_During the motivation when a visual/audio portion is being shown
_When there is an indication of the skill and standard being explained
_During the mini-lesson
_When instructions are being given
_Does it happen during teacher directed instruction
_Whole - Class discussion
_Silent reading
_Independent Work
_Working with a partner
_Working with a small group
_Working in groups
_Working at learning centers in the classroom
_When there is a share out session
_During the summary portion
_When the exit pass is filled out by students

Next determine the problems you need to turnaround in each activity.
You may need to take a closer look at the rules and corrective actions along with positive feedback procedures that you have used. Get real and be consistent. For example:
1. If swearing and teasing is a problem then "No swearing or teasing" is part of your classroom rules and you have to stick with it all during the day, each day. Each school has a ladder of referral. Use it.

2. Corrective actions have to be something that the students will not like. They have to be consistently applied in order to be effective. Part of disciplining students is disciplining oneself about knowing the full range of options offered by the school. You have to be comfortable about using those options and doing a follow through.

3. To be effective, positive feedback needs to be motivating and sincere. Develop a reward system to help motivate students to turn around their behavior. When students are misbehaving in a classroom, showing how students are progressing and the entire classroom is aware of it, can be a powerful incentive.

4. Tell students your expectations as to how they are to behave.
-- Tell them you will be teaching them how you expect them to behave.
-- You will be changing or raising your expectations for their behavior
-- Make it clear that you will no longer allow them to stop you from teaching

Here are some a series statements to use from Les Canters book that get to the heart of what you might want to say to students on adaily basis:
"I want to talk to all of you about the misbehavior that has been going on in this room. I do not feel I have done an effective enough job teaching you how to behave in this classroom. How do I know? Too many of you do not listen to me, talk when you need to be quiet, disrupt when you need to work, or make fun of your classmates. This needs to stop.
From this moment forward, will not allow any student to break a class rule or ignore the directions I give. i will use corrective actions every time you choose to misbehave. In addition, I will give you much more positive feedback when your actions show me that youare following my directions. i want all of you to know I recognize your positive behavior, not just your misbehavior.

"I am committed to making a change. I will teach you how to behave. I will conduct lessons on the appropriate behavior that I expect for m all of you throughout the period."

"I know all of you can behave, and I will do everything I can to make sure you do. I'm responsible for creating a classroom in which you can learn to the best of your ability, free from disruptive behavior. i will make sure you have that kind of environment from this day forward."

Then start your lesson.
What is the big change? You are not blaming students as that never motivates them to learn what are the right steps to behave appropriately. Let the students know the plan in changing the rules, corrective actions or positive feedback. Do not surprise students with a new plan of action. Make it plain and be consistent.