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ESL forum > Techniques and methods in Language Teaching > Help!! Lack of discipline...    

Help!! Lack of discipline...



Mafalda31
Greece

Help!! Lack of discipline...
 
OK.  I am an English teacher. I deal with children aged  10 to14.
My problem is that the kids are too noisy- I try to be strict but when I look at that sad faces I again loosen up and end up having them too relaxed! I just canīt find the balance. I want them to like me but also respect me and be quiet. I mean it is just a 10 or twelve student class each, how hard can it be? I am pretty mad right now, because I had a row with my boss who doesnīt seem to understand nothing more than figures if you know what I mean.. Anyway, there is a problem with a specific class which has students from various age groups and it seems that shouting at the old ones who donīt seem to care is unfair to the younger ones and especially new ones who donīt know me and look so intimidated by me.. Itīs difficult for me right now, and I probably need to think things through, but I would appreciate any type of advice......Thank you

28 Sep 2011      



manonski (f)
Canada

Hi

I usually try catching my students doing good but one year, it was especially tough with some classes so I came out with this system:

Each class, I gave my students 3 coupons/tickets. I told them that everytime they spoke French (their first language), I īd take a ticket. At the end of the class, they could write their names on the coupons they had left. I also gave bonus coupons. At the end of the month I did a draw for a special prize.
I īm telling you this because, usually, if my class is noisy, it īs because they are speaking in their mother tongue. When they make an effort to speak only in English, it is usually quieter.

29 Sep 2011     



Mariethe House
France

have a look at this. Someone gave the link last week ... Can īt remember who.Embarrassed
http://www.zephyrus.co.uk/class%26pupilmanagement.html
It is very good and thorough and gives good advice.Smile

29 Sep 2011     



MarionG
Netherlands

More and more I am convinced that classroom management is the key to succesful teaching. No matter how interesting, exciting or well planned your lessons are, it only takes 2 kids to mess it up for the entire class. I don īt think their are miracle solutions but I found the book by Rob Plevin "magic classroom management" extremely helpful. He runs a site: "behavioral needs" . He tends to send a lot of offers for stuff to buy (I don īt even have a credit card so for me it isn īt relevant) but he also offers lots of great free stuff. His ebook is a free download for example and I personally recommend it.
Here is a link to download it:

29 Sep 2011     



Mafalda31
Greece

Thank you all so much. Really helpful information. Thanks

29 Sep 2011     



Lindax
Ukraine

Thank you, dear Marion!

The site is a real treasure! I`ve already downloaded lots of great free resources (tutorials, starters, games, etc.)

Have a great day!

29 Sep 2011     



claudiaeusebio
Brazil

I īve been teaching for a long time. Your presence in class, your personality, should be enough for children to respect you. They need some time to get used to you, but since they understand there īs a routine, you are confident enough of what you are doing and saying, you have a constant behavior and no contradictions on what you say and do, it will become easier. It is hard to explain but I usually set the limits, etc at the beginning of the year/semester. If 2 or 3 are giving you a hard time, try to catch the students ī attention to something else and later talk to these students apart. Talk to them with respect but they should understand you run the classes. You don īt need to be neither sweet nor strict to them. Just plain normal and sincere. No anger or fear from your part. It took me years to have enough experience and psychological knowledge to feel it is no problem for me any longer....I īve been also gone through therapy with a psychologist and studied human/children behavior. Dealing with children is so much more than teaching  a subject...I recommend you find your balance and confidence as a human being while you teach and learn with them.....just what I think about it, ok? Good luck!

29 Sep 2011     



Elenie
Greece

Hi!Well, I understand how you feel because I īd been through the same. It is hard to deal with children, especially when it comes to teaching. So this is what I did.

First of all you should make clear what you expect from them at the beginning of the year. Tell them that apart from being hardworking students they should be responsible and well behaving when in class. Explain to them how much you appreciate good manners (such as waiting for your turn to speak or saying "please" and "welcome" when they address to others) and that you do not allow any swearing, offensive talking and screaming in class. Make clear, especially to the teenagers (the "rebel" ones) that you don īt like shouting at them at all and that you will treat them as if they were grown ups. Make sure they realize what that means.

Now, you should focus on reenforcing positive behaviour rather than punishing wrong behaviour. Talk to them using polite expressions yourself and respond to them only when the do so too. Ask them to talk to you again using "please" and "thank you". Every once and then say how proud of them you are whenever they are quiet for a while and every time the talk nicely to their classmates or you. You could also give the younger ones (if not to all) reinforcement stickers for their good manners or explain your older students that if they behave nicely they īll get better marks, because their behaviour in class is part of their performance.

Finally, if they still shout or scream in class, you should talk to the manager or headteacher of the school, so they allow you to have some space outside the classroom, where you will send students who cross the line. If a student repeatedly does something wrong or speaks in an offensive way, he/she will be sent there knowing that you need them to calm down so you can calm down yourself. Tell them it īs not a break, it īs for their own good and the classes ī good as well, but be firm and insist on that. They will remain there for about 5 minutes and they must be supervised (knowing that another person knows why they īre sent out of the classroom will make them feel bad and realize why you did that). This is something that you īll need to do once or twice as the other students will understand that when they overdo it they will be "punished".

So, remember to set an example of yourself and also set some boundaries. I īm not talking about turning them into robots. YOU should tell them what you expect from them and what are the limits. Every time they change their behaviour as a whole, reward them by giving them some time to play, if you schedule allows you to...

I hope what I suggested comes in handy. If you have any objection to what I īve recommended, please let me know or let īs talk about it.

Have a great school year

29 Sep 2011