Teacher Week: Day 4, Taming the Wild--Classroom Management

Linking up with Bloghoppin again! I missed yesterday but it is ok, I don't quite have my first month or week figured out yet :) I really appreciated being able to take a sneak peek into all of your planning though!

In my classroom I use a color system and it looks like many classrooms out there use a similar classroom management system. So you know how it works!

There are a few things about this system the I love:
*All students start each day on green "Ready to Learn!"
*Students not only work to stay on green, but they work to move their color up! If they make it to the top of the chart then they get to choose  special take-home note letting their family know that they had an "Outstanding" day!
*If students move their color down, they can earn their color back! They still have a chance!

At the first school I ever taught at we used a school wide color system but students could not move their colors up, and they did not have the chance to earn their color back.

I had an extremely challenging student that year. I mean, he made me question why I just spent 4 years in college preparing to be a teacher... it was that bad. But the color system did not work for him! If he had to move his color down he would just come undone! I tried to get him on his own system but was not supported by my principal. So I proposed letting him earn his color back and she agreed to that! 

It made all the difference. When he moved his color down he didn't go into a tail spin. He would actually talk with me about what happened (or just listen) and then I would suggest things he could do to earn his color back. I watched him like a HAWK to catch him doing something, anything that could earn him his color back!

So when I moved to a new school the following year I designed (or so I thought) this new color system! I seriously did think I was the only genius out there to give students the opportunity to move their color up and to earn their colors back. My teammates at the time thought it was great and innovative and all that jazz....

...then Pinterest came along! hahaha :) I quickly learned that MANY teachers use a very similar system.  But it is good to know that it works with other kiddos, too!

At the beginning of the school year I always tell my students that it is my goal that by Spring Break no one will be moving their colors down, at least not past yellow "Slow Down". This ends up being a great challenge for my students and I can honestly say that we don't have students moving to orange or red after January usually! They just get it. 

I spend so much time going over expectations every single day.

I make a conscious effort to give praise and positive reinforcement to the students who are following expectations rather than scolding or managing the few who are not following expectations.

I watch for my class leaders to emerge. It makes my heart happy when they encourage each other and keep each other accountable. Plus it makes my job easier, too!

1 comment:

  1. I use the same system! I really like it. I think allowing students to move up is a great motivator. I need to be more consistent about rewarding the "good" kids and not just focusing on moving down the "bad" kids.

    Simply Sixth Grade