20 Dead Simple Classroom Management Ideas, Tricks, and Tips

I have written extensively in the past about classroom management and I admit I have glossed over some things while belaboring other points way beyond the point of exhaustion. Below are a few of the common classroom management pieces of advice and a handful of simple tricks to use in effort to make those things happen. Try one or two and see if things become easier…

  • Work on your pacing
    • Slow down your rate of speech; kids don’t comprehend information as fast as we do
    • Be silent more often; silence allows kids to reflect more on what has been said
    • Communicate urgency without getting frantic
    • Be in control of what you say and how you say it
    • Don’t argue with kids; nothing loses power faster than an adult who argues with kids
  • Set clear expectations
    • Check for understanding; don’t assume the kids understand the first time
    • Give examples of what is and what is not allowed/expected
    • Check for understanding again
    • Write important things down
    • Check for understanding again
  • Minimize off-task behavior
    • Move around the room
    • Redirect off-task behavior as quickly as you can
    • Address repeated off-task behavior
    • Before given a chance for off-task behavior, students should be reminded of the rules and expectations of them
    • Avoid spending too much time working on a particular concept; when I am fixing a problem with my band, I will usually have them play that section no more than three times and move on, even if it’s not better — this avoids the bulk of rehearsal being focused on
  • Create a safe learning environment
    • Encourage the heck out of your students; people thrive on encouragement
    • Put a stop to criticism of other students immediately; “We don’t do that in here” works wonders
    • Set clear behavioral expectations and consequences, and follow through
    • Admit your fears and weaknesses
    • Avoid mocking wrong answers or allowing other students to do the same

While many of these may be no-brainers to most people, I’m certain that a number of you can benefit from reading these things laid out like this. I know it would have helped me when I was starting out. So have you heard any classroom management tips from more experienced teachers that simply don’t make sense to you? Post in the comments and hopefully someone will be able to help you out with them.

About Joel Wagner 515 Articles
Joel Wagner (@sywtt) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting.He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. So You Want To Teach? is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.

2 Comments on 20 Dead Simple Classroom Management Ideas, Tricks, and Tips

  1. Hi there,

    How are you doing?

    I’m Aileen Pablo. I am a professor at Open Colleges. One of my students shared soyouwanttoteach.com to me. When I browse your previous articles and work, I was really impressed and it did inspire me I have a great topic to contribute to your blog. I hope you can consider it. It’s entitled “Delaying Tactics: How To Stop Procrastination and Start Doing” . My students will be sharing their own ideas about this topic too.

    Here's a sample of our writing:http://www.collegebeing.com/six-life-tips-to-guarantee-survival-in-college/

    I look forward to hearing from you. My students and I will be delighted if their ideas together with mine will be featured in your site.

    Cheers,
    Aileen Pablo

    P.S. I read your post about What to Do When You hate Teaching. This post of yours is quite inspiring. Thank you for taking the time to post some solutions in dealing with the more common teaching problems.

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