New Teaching Practices

Here we go! The first couple days of school have passed already for me and many other people. My summer is officially coming to an end, even if the weather disagrees.

So while my blog isn’t specifically a teaching blog, I’m going to spend today to focus on what I do. I’m not perfect by any means, nor do I have every aspect of teaching down the way I want them to be. But I’m sharing some of the things I’m doing this year that hopefully someone else can learn from. In addition, if anyone has any ideas they want to share with me, I’m all for it!

Teaching practices for 2022-2023

  • Enforce expectations all year long- this one really got to me last year. I stopped enforcing my expectations and my classroom management tanked. I was miserable and stressed and just trying to make it through the year. I reflected over the summer, and I realized that enforcing expectations would probably resolve most issues.
  • Giving every student a chance- ive done this every year, but I added a new aspect to it. My district has a no-zero policy to help education be equitable. If students slack off, it’s much easier for them to work hard and come back into passing grades if it’s a 50% rather than a 0%. In addition to extra credit in assignments, I’m also doing a whole bulletin board of extra credit each month. Students can work hard and turn the extra credit in each month and earn a lot of points. So hopefully it’s less scrambling for them to pull their grades up and more excelling.
  • Recognize the team around me- I know I’m not the only person that can influence these students. I’m going to try to be more in contact with parents/guardians and keep them involved in their student’s education. In addition, I know the admin team at my school want me to succeed and are there to help me as well. I’m not alone in handling these students.
  • Keep a consistent routine- ive noticed that I lose students when theres no routine. They think they can act out because my classroom is a lawless place. So without falling into the trap of monotony, being consistent is easier and beneficial for both me and my students.
  • Follow through with consequences- I’m a people-pleaser by nature, and it can be hard for me to actually discipline and punish my students, even when it’s needed. So I have a chart in my room showing a list of consequences, and I fully plan to follow through with them this year. This really falls back go knowing that I’m not alone.
  • Set rigorous but attainable standards- last year I definitely set my standards too high for myself and my students. I thought I was better than I was and that nothing would go wrong. Of course, since I teach middle school, things went wrong. And when they did, all of a sudden, my high standards became a mountain peak. I felt I was just trying to play catch-up to figure things out. I felt so tired and worn down because I didn’t feel I was actually doing my job. If I lower the bar for myself a little bit, I won’t feel so bad and far behind when inevitably things go wrong.

Classroom management is all about “management.” That’s why it not called classroom control. One of the most important lessons anyone can learn as a teacher is that there are things outside of your control. And when those things happen, what makes you a good teacher is how you respond to the situations outside your control. You do your best to fend off situations, but accept that you can’t solve everything. Teachers don’t solve all the world’s problems. They do their best to prepare and put things in place like the above mentioned, but they know that things are still going to go wrong at some point.

I’m trying to be better. I’m trying to do better. And that’s all aspects of my life, including teaching. So I’m trying to spread any knowledge I have in the hopes someone can find it useful.

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