Hey everyone! I hope you are having an awesome week so far, and today I thought it would be fun to talk about classroom management. We talk about classroom management a lot, right? You know those years when you just have crazy kids in your classroom? They’re awesome. All kids are awesome – we know that, but sometimes it takes a little bit more to get through to them that it’s not a big game, right? That you’re here to learn, you’re not helping others to learn when you’re acting crazy, and it really becomes a struggle sometimes. Even if you have sometimes the best parent involvement, sometimes those kids just take a life of their own, that’s for sure.
Something that I have found that has worked in the past for me, I don’t know if it’ll work for you as every student and every classroom is different. But if you’re at your wit’s end, you’re probably . willing to try just about anything. This was something that worked for one of my most challenging third grade students ever.
I had a boy, we’ll just call him G, and G basically refused to do anything. G even fell asleep during, yes, the state standardized tests, but he was very, very bright and I knew that he was bright. He was just having trouble coming to grips with the fact that he was bright, I think.
He wasn’t sure how to react like that because he had always been the troublemaker, or the goofball, or the one who just didn’t listen. He wanted a lot of attention, and not in a good way. I decided to give him some attention, but let’s do it in a good way so he realizes that he can be part of our classroom team.
Suddenly, he realized, “Maybe it’s a good thing if I’m staying on task, if I’m doing what I need to be doing,” and it came down to some basic peer pressure. If we were in the hallway walking and G decided just to do his own thing or talking, whatever, you know how that goes, and the other students got to the point where they said, “Hey G, come on. You can do this. I know that you can stand in line here quietly, let’s get down this hall.” My class knew if they were talking whenever we were headed to a special, then guess what? We turned around and we walked back to our classroom and we turned around until we got ready again, and then we would walk back. Sometimes it would take 4 and 5 times if G was just acting silly. He just really wanted that attention, and he wanted to know he was in control, so guess what? We went back and started it over again.
After a couple of times the students really wanted to get their special. They enjoy specials, so they would say, “G, quit, let’s do this. You can do this,” and so they were his biggest cheerleaders, even more than I was, and that made a huge difference in G’s behavior.
I really, really found that it was super effective, something I had never considered trying before, and maybe it won’t work for all of your students. Maybe it’ll work for 1 of your students. Maybe it won’t work at all. And to be perfectly honest, sometimes it didn’t work for G on certain days he just felt like doing his own thing. But once I started it, it worked more than it didn’t.
Good luck. I would love to hear how this strategy is, or maybe isn’t, working for you and your students. Leave us a comment below to share!