Primary Classroom behaviour management – “lets start at the very beginning”

Ok here we go….Classroom behaviour and how to set up systems and manage situations.

This is going to be the first in a short series of blogs on this subject but let me say from the outset that there is no silver bullet, no one strategy that I can give you that you can use across the board that is a “one size fits all” success.

So now you’re depressed….don’t be. What I am about to give you is a series of things to implement that will gradually build towards the classroom control and learning environment that you are wanting and wishing to achieve.

In true CW style (that’s me!) let me start by waffling off topic for a bit before we delve into what we are looking at!

Last night I watched the film, “The Social Network”….I’ve had it on my shelf for a while and perhaps watched it twice before but thought it deserved a re-run. If you’ve never seen it, then give it a go…..excellent in my opinion. So this morning whilst in the City I thought I would follow up and buy the book on which the film was based….in to Waterstones I went.

After looking for a while I couldn’t see it…but had a look through the business section anyway! I also had to pass the Teaching section so I thought I would delve in and see what was going on….amongst all the lesson plans and curriculum stuff, 2 books caught my eye. One I took down from the shelf and the other I didn’t even bother.

The one I didn’t bother even looking at had the grand title “How to be a successful Primary School teacher”… I am not kidding when I say it was 3 inches thick (that’s 7.5 cm for those who work solely in metric!). Apart from its rather overstated title the very fact that it was so thick and therefore full of information put me off even bothering. It might have been useful for standing on to reach a top shelf but apart from that ….nah !

The second was a book about Primary School behaviour management…interesting I thought and took it off the shelf. It can be read as a text or “dipped into” in response to situations!…How very reassuring I thought ….hmmm. It was A4 size and perhaps 1 inch thick and when I opened it the pages were small print and covered every page (mostly) oh with the addition of “case studies” ….( maybe these were “headcase studies!) I didn’t bother reading any of them !

The simple fact is that books written like this are really no use at all – the beauty of being a teacher and especially a Primary School teacher is that you have your own class. As we’ve said before  – you create the learning environment and you create and foster the atmosphere. Every child is different, every class is different and every school is different. One size does not fit all and no amount of “how to books” with “case studies” can instruct you on how to deal with each and every differing situation. Gradually as you become more experienced you will learn what works and what doesn’t work and begin to build up a personal resource bank in your head which you can draw on with each differing school, class and child.

Ok back to it… following that, you are thinking – yes but Charles on this site you are giving advice on different topic areas involved in our teaching, so how is that different from a book.

Well the difference is that I am aiming to give you the “strategies and ideas” to consider and possibly  employ in your classroom or on which to base your own actions… we can look at variables in a “what if?” or “how do I?” scenario and work through things together….here we can discuss the thought process behind different approaches and the expectations from each. Basically we can draw on our joint resources to approach things as they may arise.

So back on topic (finally I hear you say!)….let me make my opening statement on this:-

The basic requirement of behaviour management in your Class is organisation

You can see how important that statement is because it stands on its own and I have put it in bold. Let me say it again because it is the root of everything in your class.

The basic requirement of behaviour management in your Class is organisation

Lets reverse that and say – “if your classroom is not organised then you WILL struggle with behaviour. Easy – simple and that’s the truth.

From here we will look at what that means and how you can start at the very beginning to implement your own organisation. What is imperative and necessary and what are useful additions.

That’s all for the next article – have a great weekend



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