|Assessing Your Classroom Behavior Management Plan|
|posted by: Larisa | June 20, 2012, 07:26 PM|
Let’s face it: your classroom behavior management plan is not as successful as you dreamed it would be. You meticulously slaved over developing and implementing a foolproof behavior management plan, yet your students somehow found the loophole. It’s a little embarrassing to admit it, but 25 fourth graders proved that you are the only fool in this “foolproof” behavior management plan.
The good news, however, is that the end of the school year is a great time to reflect on how you implemented your behavior management plan. Are your students really the craftiest lawyers-in-training, or are you missing something when you create your behavior management plan? Creating an effective behavior plan is only half of the battle; implementation is another battle altogether.
In creating your behavior management plan, did you ponder the logistics of implementing the plan? Few teachers enjoy an “ideal” classroom. If you’re one of those poor souls who is locked away in a trailer to teach Algebra II, did you notice that kids are asking to leave in the middle of your lesson to go to the bathroom in the main building to avoid learning Algebra II? Modifying this behavior seems easy – just tell students that they aren’t allowed to go to the bathroom during class. But what if it’s an emergency? Do you send one kid or two? Next thing you know, you have a revolving door of kids going to the bathroom during the Algebra II lesson and no one learns anything. If you can’t solve the logistical problem (like teaching in a trailer), then consider a different approach and consult with other teachers to see how they handle the logistical problem.
Be sure to also consider how practical the implementation of your plan is. As we dream up solutions to classroom problems, sometimes our imagination can take over and common sense gets left by the wayside. In order to implement your behavior plan, make sure that your plan is simple enough that you can prioritize problems and the energy that goes towards solving those more important problems first. Teaching is a calorie-burning activity, and if you burn all your energy up by managing the intricacies of your plan, you won’t have energy leftover for the practicalities of daily classroom life.
Teachers, you are tremendous role models in the lives of your students. Behavior management plans should account for the fact that students pick up on teacher modeling. It’s one thing to tell your students what the rules are, but it’s another thing to demonstrate for your students what the rules are. If it’s part of your behavior management plan to make sure that students raise a hand when they want to be called on, do not acknowledge a student who calls out answers without raising his or her hand. Use your “withitness” to model the good behavior you want to result from your behavior plan.
Finally, because you are a “withit” teacher, you are already in the habit of conducting assessments. Think about how well you stuck to implementing your behavior management plan. Consider how long it took before you were compromising and softening up on your plan. It is critical to assess yourself on a daily basis when you implement a new behavior management plan to make sure that you aren’t allowing bad habits to creep in before your plan really takes off. In addition to self-assessing, consider asking a colleague to sit in during one of your classes so that you can get another opinion about how successful your behavior management plan is. Be prepared to make adjustments as you go along, but don’t make adjustments that give your 25 lawyers-in-training the opportunity to find loopholes in your behavior management plan.
Teachers, now that it is the summer, how did your behavior management plan go this year? What do you plan to adjust in anticipation of the upcoming school year?