Reflecting on Discipline: Discipline Tips Part I

teacher at front of desksIt happens to the best of us. Whether a seasoned veteran in the classroom or still a bit green behind the ears, every teacher experiences discipline glitches. Summer provides a great opportunity to reflect on your classroom management plan and make it even better for the next school year.

Here are some quick tips that will help any classroom run more smoothly:

1. Discipline with Dignity
All students need to be treated with dignity, even when being disciplined. Disciplining a child privately is often the best course of action; try to issue quiet reminders, nonverbal cues or one-on-one conferences.

One of the best things to remember is that misbehaving students win whenever they get you to lose your cool. Take your time when students push your buttons and decide carefully on your response. There’s no need to rush into a response that you may regret later.

2. Take an Exercise Break
One of the best favors you can do for yourself and your students is to take an exercise break. Exercise eliminates the wiggles and helps students regain focus. Exercise doesn’t have to be complicated or time-consuming. It could involve five minutes of teacher-directed activities, such as walking in place, stretching to the ceiling, touching your toes, drawing figure eights in the air with your arms, etc. Once the students know the activities, you can pick a student to lead the exercise time. Or take your students outside for 5–7 minutes. This is not to replace physical education, but it is a quick chance to do some specific physical activity when students need it most.

3. Use Positive Reinforcement
Give students a goal or reward that they can work toward as a class. Let parents know what the reward is, and publish their success when students reach the goal. A quick and inexpensive reward is popcorn. Set aside a time for students to read books or play games of their choice while enjoying their popcorn.  If you do not wish to pop the corn, buy a large bag of pre-popped popcorn and a package of inexpensive paper cups to use as scoops and dishes.

4. Prepare a Plan
Knowing that you have a clear-cut discipline plan in place will make your classroom a secure, peaceful environment for your students. Consider the attached checklist when creating your plan. Make sure you communicate the plan with your parents and students–or, better yet, involve students in creating the discipline plan during the first week of school. This will give them a sense of ownership, resulting in a positive year of learning for all!

Do you have your own classroom discipline tips you would like to share? If so, please comment below and share it with us! We’d love to hear your great ideas. For this three part series we will be randomly selecting someone from the comments to receive a Teacher Created Resources book of their choice.

This is part one of a three-part series: Discipline Tips for Teachers. Coming next: Using nonverbal signals to redirect students.

Contributed by: Teacher Created Resources


1 Comment

Filed under Behavior Management, Discipline, Teaching

One response to “Reflecting on Discipline: Discipline Tips Part I

  1. Don’t forget the most important part of a behavior/discipline plan: CONSISTENCY. Do what you say you’re going to do, every time! Set expectations high and make consequences clear cut and understandable. And then, follow through!