Well, Stacie, that explains all the rule-writing and essays you've talked
about! You had probably explained that on the list before, but I joined
mid-year, and am not always able to read every post during the week. I'm
sorry that I was not aware of that limitation you are working with.
Sounds like your school might need to adjust their school-wide plan! I
wonder if other teachers are having any success with it. My guess is not.
What a shame you have no flexibility with that. Can you require them to
write the rules in a creative manner, such as as in calligraphy, 3D letters,
a spiral or backwards?
Do you have flexibility with regard to the rules? I would make all the rules
start with the word "Respect."
1. Respect the PEOPLE in the art studio. (This includes your teacher, your
self, your classmates, and any visitors.)
2. Respect the STUFF in the art studio. (This includes supplies, tools and
equipment, personal belongings, furniture, and, of coure, artwork.)
3. Respect your TIME in the art studio. (Don't waste it by behaving
inappropriately when you could be learning and creating.)
4. Respect all SCHOOL RULES in the art studio.
I think that these for rules cover most situations that arise. I may have
posted those here before; if so, I apologize for the repetition.
I wish I had some concrete suggestions to offer you on how to specifically
handle those all-too-common situations of misbehavior. I don't think I would
make the entire class have to come in again if it was just a few who did so
disruptively. I would make the guilty parties do it all over again, though.
Can you raise one eyebrow? I once met an art teacher who had mastered an
unbelievably effective "look." You know--the teacher "look" that stops
students in their tracks! She said she practiced for hours in front of a
mirror, early in her career, first using her fingers to move one eyebrow up
and down and then the other, 'til she finally mastered muscle control of her
eyebrows individually. She had every aspect of her expression mastered, from
the one eyebrow raised to the set of her mouth and tilt of her head. It
really got the students' attention and communicated effectively. Maybe one
of these days I'll take her cue and start an eyebrow training program!
Eye contact is so important. I find that so many students do not look you in
the eye when you are talking to them. I try to gently train mine, and be
consistent in asking them to look at me when I am speaking to them. I look
back at them with what I hope are calm and convincing eyes that let them
know that I see them as a person who I respect and believe in.