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Lesson Plans

Re: classroom management or misunderstanding forms of resistance?

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Maggie White (mwhite)
Tue, 10 Feb 1998 17:04:41 -0800

kmt127 wrote:
> Much of the discourse on classroom management has focused on the punishment
> of disruptive students, neglecting the more important questions around why
> students are disruptive. <snip> Is it based upon a condemnation of
> underlying repressive ideologies that characterize schooling in general?
> In order to address classroom management we must move away from archaic
> forms of discipline and punishment and try to understand why students are
> resisting certain forms of pedagogy. Can we not discuss how artists
> (some) resist forms of oppression and rebel through their work, in so
> providing a language for students to use when critiquing certain forms of
> schooling? <snip>

While it's valid to discuss artists' resistance of oppression _through their art_,
it is not the same as a student who is throwing clay, stealing supplies to make a pipe,
vandalizing another student's work, deliberately pouring ink on the floor, gouging the
tabletops, writing obscenities regarding other students with permanent
markers...certainly these are forms of expression, but THEY ARE INAPPROPRIATE FORMS.

In some cases, it's necessary to deal harshly and publicly with certain behaviors before
other students are "infected." There are always students who for some reason have a lot
of power, and are able to subtly control the attitudes of an entire class, for better or
worse. I've seen it both ways.

A chronically disruptive student most likely is not "condemning the underlying
repressive ideologies that characterize schooling in general," nor "resisting certain
forms of pedagogy," but is acting out more deep-seated problems. These students, of
course, deserve our patience and understanding and some one-on-one; however, if it
interferes with other students' learning or safety, then hell, yeah, I'm going to take

Tell us how you have actually dealt with disruption in the classroom.

Maggie**remove x in address to reply