I am doing a training this week on classroom management. The school I am working with really wanted me to help the teachers understand they "why" behind classroom management. Why we give children a moment to cool off after they get upset. Why we don't ask kids to write their names on the board when they've done something wrong. Why we don't make kids sit in time out.
As I have worked on this training, I have really had to look at what goes into creating a classroom management system that works because there are so many "why's". Classroom management can be affected by physical reactions, personal relationships, and past experiences. This is why no one system will ever be completely effective for every teacher. And yet, I still see clip charts when I go into classrooms. So many teachers still use clip charts even when we know that they are harmful to children. In this 2018 article from the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, the authors give us three very important reasons to lose clip charts. I would like to add to those reasons that clip charts do nothing to examine the "why" behind the behavior.
A good classroom management system changes and evolves with the teacher and the students. It focuses on finding ways to help children become better humans and less on shaming them for their mistakes. To create a really good classroom management system, you need to start with the first "why". Why did you become a teacher?
Want to learn more about ditching the clips? You can follow #ditchtheclips on Twitter or find out more about the amazing educator Elizabeth Merce.
Kathryn Harrison has worked in several different educational settings, so she has a unique perspective on education.