Maintaining Discipline in The Classroom
At some point in a teachers' teaching career, the teacher will have to deal with misbehaving students and conflict which might occur during a class. This is where maintaining discipline get put into action. Disciplining is not as simple as it seems, there are many different factors to consider before conducting a punishment. The teacher will not have a problem with this if the teacher knows how to deal with them correctly or prevent them from happening in the first place.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Amelie R. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
When maintaining discipline, the degree in which they will be carried out all depends on the following six factors: age of student, motivation, enthusiasm towards learning, class size, principles and atmosphere of the school and lastly respect between students and teachers and only thereafter the teacher can come up with suitable disciplinary techniques. When telling off younger students it is far more effective to use a gentle voice and avoid judgmental tones whereas on opposite ends for teenage boys who are in conflict the teacher might need to raise their voice to catch their attention for example. When disciplining someone in a big class, you might not want to isolate them too much as it makes the student feel shameful and embarrassed.
In maintain discipline, the teacher needs to evaluate the problems which could cause the misbehaving in the first place. There are many reasons which can result in problematic behavior from a student. A few of them include family problems, low self-esteem, boredom, peer pressure, lack of respect for the teacher and other students and also class size. In a large class, some students might seek the teachers' attention more but was not getting enough and might act out. Students who are bored might start throwing paper plane or passing notes for example in which all these actions should be disciplined by the teacher.
Being the teacher means that the students will focus most of their attention towards you and anything that you do or say. Therefore, it is essential for the teacher to act responsibly in example for the students which mean the teacher needs to be punctual, well prepared before the class has begun. The students look up to teachers so they do not want to see teachers being inconsistent or unfair. It is important the teacher does not let personal feelings cloud the treatment of students. The teacher has to make their lessons enthusiastic and varied, with an enjoyable environment for learning. Teachers' behaviors and actions are all perceived by students and therefore should always be cautious about how to be a responsible role model.
Once the teacher has tried to their best ability to prevent the problem behavior but was unsuccessful, then it is time to act. In response to arising problem behaviors the teacher has to act immediately, do not expect it to cool down on its own, a simple response involves stopping and looking at the students in disbelief, although these actions may not be enough sometimes. Always focus on the behavior of the child and what they acted wrong, do not put blame on the student but only to their behaviors. One of the most important things to remember is to keep calm and avoid shouting as it never really helps. A good solution is also to change classroom dynamics and move students misbehaving far from each other. It is also helpful to ask any colleges on how to respond to some children but doesn't forget to keep to schools' disciplinary codes.
Also Read: What questions should I ask a TEFL employer?
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Maintaining discipline in a classroom considers many little factors and small details, it is not as simple as it seems. For teachers who are introverts or have difficulty with eye contact, this could become a problematic situation. There should always be a balance between exercising control and encouraging a relaxed learning atmosphere for everyone involved in the class.
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