Behavior Management: What do you do when you don't have a "normal" classroom?

I'm continuing my Behavior Management Mini-Series today.  As you read yesterday, I am a fan of the clip chart.  Not just the clip chart, but the clip chart as part of a working system that you, your students, your team & the parents all understand.  But, what happens when you don't have a "normal" classroom?

This year I moved positions not a shocker to my dream job of teaching an enrichment pull-out class for GT Students.  I love my job!  In this blog entry,  I discussed a few issues I encountered with this position.  The main issue I experienced was that I saw my students at max 4 times per month.  I have pretty high expectations for following classroom procedures and I felt as if I was teaching them every time I saw the students.  

I got this position in August of 2013.  So, I had everything planned out for my classroom and suddenly, I had to change it all!!  I didn't see 3 classes per day, I saw 1 class each day.  I changed things up, but decided to keep the clip chart.  
I put each day's clips into zipper pouches and labeled them for each day I had a class.  I also assigned 1 person per day to be in charge of putting their clips in the zipper pouch and putting the next day's clips on the chart at the end of the day.  It turned out, 5th Graders didn't really buy into the clip chart like my 3rd Graders did.  
I didn't have a lot of behavior issues.  I only saw my students once a week, it was a project based classroom that encouraged groups to talk and explore.  I also used a lot of technology & let's be serious, technology =engagement.  I did have a few issues with one class in particular, which I attribute to the school norms/expectations at their home school.   

So, next year I've been throwing around the idea of implementing "behavior tags".  I have over 60 students per week, so I need to figure out how the students will keep up with the tags and what incentives I should have.  

Another option for next year is Class Dojo.  Join me Friday as I interview other teachers and find out how they liked Class Dojo.

This Little Piggy hopes you're learning a little this week. 


Mercedes Hutchens said...

Interesting post. I don't have a 'normal' class either. I teach k-6 intervention and I see over 200 kids a day and they change weekly. I'm one for setting consistent routines and I was nervous to not be able to have a specific behavior system. I found what you did. Student engagement is the key. As long as I had a positive engaging atmosphere, I didn't have many behavior issues. The kids learned that if they were focused we'd have time for a GoNoodle activity or something fun before we left and that helped them manage each other. My husband volunteers and he would randomly announce "Sticker Day" and give every kid a sticker. It just helped lend to the positive climate. Even the 6th graders loved that. I look forward to reading about how next year goes with the tags.

Surfing to Success

D. Frideley said...

Thanks for the comment Mercedes. I absolutely love your blog!! It was one of the first I ever followed.

I agree engagement cuts down on behavior issues about 90% of the time.


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