The Best Strategies for Having Good Classroom Management
The learning process of a foreign language inside a classroom has been demonstrated as one of the best ways in which different competencies can be practiced at the same time. Abilities such as grammar, reading, listening, and conversation skills are put to the test, all of them supervised by a teacher whom a conversation can be established. This same teacher is the one in charge of creating and maintaining an environment based on trust and positivism, so the student may appropriately develop his aptitudes.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Ilse G. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
We know that different types of classroom groups exist when teaching a foreign language; however, this isn’t relevant when the teacher has settled good rapport with the students. This strategy helps strengthen the trust of his students and to make themselves feel confident with their learning process. Some examples for creating a good teacher-student relationship are to show interest in the actual learners, such as knowing their names, interests, and motivations for learning the language. Being positive in the classroom is an excellent strategy for inspiring students. A teacher with a good attitude can transform the most boring subject to one of excitement. Getting the students to help each other is also a recommended strategy for large classroom groups. This helps consolidate a student-student rapport, owing to the better students supporting the ones in need of more practice.
In my experience as a teacher, I’ve encountered with groups of apathetic students who change as time goes on, in response to seeing the teacher and their companions’ approach to the class. This shows us that the role of the educator is not only one of teaching, but also one of sharing his love of the language and the way of instructing.
To have good classroom management, it is essential for the instructor to have the following 3 characteristics: eye contact, gesture and the volume of his or her voice. As a teacher of young learners myself, these characteristics facilitated my management ability of a group where students were kids, with ages ranging from 5 to 7 years old. Successful control of voice tone makes for clear instructions. Relating to vocabulary, the best options are gesture use, since they attract children’s attention, and are an easy way of taking advantage of the lack of the kids’ involvement with the language without the need of a verbal explanation. It has to be noted that gestures are not only a classroom management methodology.
Eye contact helps us maintain discipline. The teacher, by having visual contact with his or her students, makes sure that they are paying attention to him or her. Visual contact with students is fundamental to the learning process. Nonetheless, care must be taken, since always staring at students can make them feel not at ease.
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Many of the problems relating to discipline come from situations outside the classroom. For example, situations that I’ve faced like lack of respect for the teacher by a student have been solved by dialogue with this same student. By showing interest in his problems and offering a solution to them, the student changed his behavior when he felt support from somebody inside the classroom. It is never okay to expose the learner in front of other students. The best strategy is to talk to him or her individually to avoid the generation of negative feelings and prevent the impact of his motivation in the learning process. Preventing bad behavior is necessary for creating an environment of friendliness and peacefulness. The best option for this is to reinforce the relationship between students and teachers using talking games, teamwork, pair work and linking the groups’ interests with the lessons seen in the language course. Finally, the teacher must have control of their own emotions when facing negative situations in the classroom.
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As final thoughts, in my experience as a teacher, I can say that classroom management is very important to make the learning process effective, making students get quality education and reach their goals. Many of the methodologies written here are essential in my classroom. Enjoying the teaching process and creating dynamic games is the key to maintaining discipline in the classroom.
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