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RE: [teacherartexchange] Advice, Please: Rowdy Kids

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From: KPRS2 (kprs2_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Wed Aug 17 2005 - 21:15:52 PDT


Truer words were never spoken, Woody. I teach on the high school level, and
find that if you have something to offer students (know your stuff, caring,
helping) they will respond to you. I spend most of my time teaching, and
helping students. The few that initially try to "buck the system" are
quickly "peer pressured" into getting with the program. Consistancy,
"meaning what you say, and saying what you mean", and honesty in teaching
and in interaction with students works for me. I also do one more thing and
that is gather them in real close, and look them each into their eyes when I
teach (of course I only teach 20-24 at a time, not the large group some out
there have). I also have the annoying habit of saying at the end of a
demonstration (up close) and question/answer session, BREAK, and like
football players we all break and go to our respective working stations
(tables),and get started. Of course you do get the occasional kid that just
doesn't want to 'get it'. I contact the parents immediately. (I have a
friend who has her cell phone programed with the troublesome student's
parents, and when a student acts out, and doesn't respond to her requests,
she just stops the class and makes a phone call during class after asking
the student if he/she would like to explain to their parents why she is
calling, or should she. Generally she only has to do it once or twice during
the year to get her point across). Generally speaking if students know what
is expected of them, feel(artistically) safe, and are not surrounded by
chaos (and THAT is why discipline is utmost important)they will work
productively while having a good time (which is one of your jobs as a
teacher to create and control classroom atmosphere). All of this gets easier
the longer you teach. Why? You develop a reputation. Students DO talk, you
know.

San D

On classroom management: I have (almost) always found that if you are
well prepared and keep the students busy on meaningful work that
is challenging enough and fun to do they will behave. The students
respect a teacher that knows their stuff and interacts with them
in a caring way. If they respect and care for you they will jump
through any hoop for you. I never spent very much time with any
sort of classroom management scheme. I was to busy teaching and
helping students. After all is art and they love to be there
and are eager to please you.
                                        Woody

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