Walking in your first day and managing a classroom sounds crazy. All of us haven’t truly managed a classroom on our own yet, we’re still figuring out how we are going to control a classroom with all the hustle and bustle. Here’s some tips that might be useful:
- Classroom/Lab Safety Figured Out Right Away
Lab safety is incredibly important in the science classroom. Whether you are in a chemistry classroom working with possibly dangerous chemicals or a biology classroom with animal handling; there is always a reason to get lab safety taken care of. The sooner your students know the rules about doing labs/activities, the more likely horseplay will be under control.
- Have the Rules Figured Out When the Students Walk In
Pretty self explanatory, make sure the students know the rules day one and then stick to them for the remainder of the year. Keeping a chart of some kind up to make sure they know the rules to follow if they ever need a reminder!
- Setup A Procedure for Students
Get students into a routine when you begin class. It doesn’t have to be anything convoluted, something as simple as sitting in their seats and then asking them about how their days or weekends went. This gets them to get their talking out of their systems and you begin to feel more approachable to them.
- Build Trust
Students want to know that you are there for them. Making yourself out to be someone who doesn’t care means they won’t care about you or your class. Give your students a reason to see you as a person, not just their teacher (don’t make them think they can push you over though)!
- Get Them Situated
This one seems odd, but it essentially means give the students a space where they feel comfortable. If they feel comfortable in your classroom and can trust and respect you (see above), then they’ll listen to you and most of the time, they will behave and want to be in class. Give them a reason to come into your class, and that doesn’t mean just to learn!
- Keep them Engaged!
Don’t let your students lose interest in you. Keep a strong presence and if you see/feel the students are clearly becoming distracted or unable to pay attention, it’s time to change what you are doing. If you’ve been lecturing for more than 15 minutes, get your students doing an activity, they can’t keep their attention on a lecture for that long! If students are actively doing something and are interested in what they are doing, then they will manage themselves.
— Betsey McIntyre (@BetseyMcIntyre) April 10, 2018