menu   home Contact Me Shop  

Classroom Management

Author: Steve Hiles

I look back on my own college experiences. Granted, we took the usual "Methods" courses and did the educational labs at various elementary schools. However, it seems to be now that they were not at all "in-depth" in the way that I needed them to be.

For example, our "Classroom Management" course barely skimmed the surface of what a teacher needs to know about the mechanics of running a class. There was no discussion of how to take roll or how to utilize a grade book. These are essential and take up time in every class.

Other time consuming items, to mention just a few, include adjusting window shades and room temperature, dealing with audiovisual equipment, and distributing supplies including helping students to locate lost pens or pencils. Construction noise, broken alarm systems or public address speakers, doorknobs that fall off or chairs or tables that break, people who go missing, get sick, or are simply lost - the list of possible disruptions to class time can be seemingly endless. These can take up the minutes of class.

Adding up all of the time wasters, by the time the bell rings signaling the end of the class and or day, you can find you have had very little time to actually teach, or more importantly, for your students to learn. You may have had little or no preparation in college courses for how to deal with these on-going (and often irritating) problems.

This is the only profession that I am aware of that expects a teacher fresh out of college to perform like a 20-year veteran - which to me is ridiculous.

All the best,

You may find my book on classroom management of interest:
Get Started on the Right Foot
Be sure to follow me for the latest educational resources, sales and freebies at:
Teachers Pay Teachers

First Day of School Jitters

Steve Hiles

The first day of school looms ahead-and you find yourself biting your nails.  It does not matter if you are a veteran teacher who has taught for thirty years or more, or a recent graduate from a teaching college facing your first class as a solo teacher.  It's just normal to get a bit of "stage fright" as the first day of school rolls around.

As teachers, we all have good reasons to examine our feelings and emotions when faced with the challenges of the year of teaching ahead.  It takes a great deal of energy to be a teacher.  It requires high levels of commitment, responsibility, knowledge, and leadership skills to handle a class and to guide and engage students in the learning process.  How you feel about your work affects its quality and the degree of pleasure you take in it.

Being willing to be shut inside a classroom with a large group of children actually takes real courage.  As teachers, we are less free than business people to take breaks, go out for lunch, on the spur of the moment, or to walk away from our responsibilities.  While we may not work 9-to-5, many of us actually devote all our waking hours to our classroom concerns.  Teacher requires some real sacrifices - and each time we start a new year, it may be wise to look at how well we have balanced our "real lives" outside the classroom with the rewards we receive from teaching.

You will be juggling schedules, objectives, materials, regular classwork, homework, grades and much much more.  Will you have the organizational skills, patience, and energy to keep up with it all?  Having the energy to 'do it all' becomes a real question for many teachers.  The rate of "burnout" in the teaching profession is high.  Make a point of looking at how well you take care of yourself.  You will want to build pleasures, relaxation, and refreshment of various kinds to help you continue to enjoy and be effective in your work.

In conclusion, as the Boy Scout motto teaches, your best protection is preparation.  Of course, you cannot prepare for every eventuality but you can prepare sufficiently to feel confident that you can handle most of your important work as a teacher.  So to my fellow teachers, the best of luck to you in coming school year!

All the best,

Be sure to follow me for the latest educational resources, sales and freebies at:  Teachers Pay Teachers