Fostering a Respectful Learning Environment
The goal of classroom management is to establish and maintain an environment in which all students can learn. This includes create a classroom that is safe, respectful, and engaging. In short, I want my classroom to be a place where students want to be. Based on this goal,my classroom rules are built on the backbone of ensuring learning for all students. I expect that all students will respect themselves and others and that they will act in a way that is safe and does not disrupt learning. I will communicate the expectations to students and then consistently enforce them. I believe it’s important for students to take ownership of their behavior and recognize how it affects others in the class. Make rules and routines clear to students and be consistent in enforcing them. This is essential for students to perceive me as being fair and showing students that I respect them and asking for the same respect back for me and for their peers.

Building Rapport with Students
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Kayaking with my students on a field trip was an excellent opportunity to get to know my students better and build rapport.

Positive student-teacher relationships are essential for student learning. I believe that the best way to build these relationships is to get to know my students as individuals and show them that I care about their success. Though I will need to redirect student behavior, it is important for me to balance this with positive interactions to show that it is the behavior that I disapprove of and not the student. I also figure out what motivates and interests my students and try to incorporate these things into my lessons and my interactions. I can also work to build relationships by making an effort to learn about students’ live outside of the classroom. This includes attending sporting events, musical performances, plays and other events and letting students know that I was there supporting them. If I have difficulty with particular students, I can try strategies like 2x10 strategy where I have a two minute conversation with that student every day for ten days. I have used this strategy effectively during my student teaching with a difficult student and seen remarkable improvement in his behavior in my class.

Using Effective Routines and Procedures
Time is a precious commodity in a classroom and it is essential that I make the best use of mine and my students’ time. I plan to minimize transition time by establishing routines for activities like going into the lab or getting ready to take notes, preparing students for each activity fully, and making sure that I myself have materials ready. I believe that it is important to prepare students for activities by communicating learning goals and to have closure for activities by discussing what was learned and reinforcing the big ideas. I plan enforce consistently that students do not pack up until I say that class is over and that I expect to have their full attention and participation up until that point. See a full Classroom Management Plan I developed here, including information about how I plan to organize my classroom, implement routines, organize and manage instruction, set expectations for students, and implement discipline and positive reinforcement for students.

Addressing Student Misbehavior
My student teaching experience has provided me the opportunity to become much more comfortable in the role of authority. I have become adept at addressing student misbehavior efficiently and consistently. The key to addressing misbehavior is consistently enforcing expectations until students become used to the procedure. I address misbehavior with as little ordeal as possible so as not to reward the misbehavior, embarrass the student, or get the class off track.

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In lab, students are expected to follow general lab safety procedures as well as any extra precautions, like in this lab where students worked with a strong acid.

Safety and Welfare (NSTA Standard 9)
It is my utmost priority to ensure that students remain safe in my classroom, particularly in the laboratory. In order to accomplish this, students will be aware of and follow rules in the lab at all times. Click here to see my plan for student safety including activities, safety rules, a safety contract and a quiz.