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Sara Sleyster

Classroom Management and


Communications Plan
Spring 2014
Management Style and Philosophical Beliefs
Strong classroom management skills are important for a teacher to create an
environment for students that is conducive to learning. Time spent on addressing
behaviors and reacting to disruptions cannot be regained. With the already limited time
teachers have with students it is important to not waste it on discipline issues that could
have been avoided with proper planning and clear expectations.
My classroom management style is authoritative, which puts limits and controls
on the students, but simultaneously encourages independence. I agree with Ginotts
Model of classroom management that there should be an open line of communication
between the student and teacher. I want students to have choices and feel in control of
their actions. At the same time, I also want students to understand the reasoning behind
my rules and actions in the classroom.
Philosophically, I favor the Love and Logic approach to classroom management.
I think establishing a trusting relationship with students is essential to the process. How
students behave is their choice, but when they make poor choices it is also their
responsibility to handle the consequences. Classroom management should not be a
dictatorship. Instead the teacher should be a model of appropriate behavior and an
advocate for students as they are learning lessons on actions and consequences.

Establishing a Positive Classroom Culture


My first step in building a positive student-teacher relationship is to learn every
students name in the first week of class. I plan to greet them at the door or in the hallway
with a positive attitude and welcome them to class. I will engage students in small talk as
I get to know them and learn about their interests. I could use an ice-breaker activity at
the start of the semester to help foster these relationships between the students and myself
as well as between the students.
Fay and Funk note in Teaching with Love and Logic that students need stability
and a feeling of security. By setting the tone that my classroom is a place of respect and
safety, students will be better able to concentrate on learning and feel more open to
sharing their thoughts. Students will know that in my classroom they matter.

Developing Classroom Rules and Procedures


I plan to develop the policies on my own. I want my expectations to be clear and
not up for discussion. The policies will be fairly standard: be respectful, be attentive, do
your best. Students can use the bathroom, get drinks, see the nurse once Ive taken
attendance and conveyed the plan for the day. Passes will be pre-made and available for
them to use without interrupting me to ask. The pass system as well as the okay of food
and drinks in the classroom will only change if they become a problem. Folders will be
set up for students to check for missed paperwork if they were absent. It will be there
responsibility to get with me before or after class with questions.
The learning objectives for the unit will be posted in the classroom. A shortened
version of them will be included on any paperwork describing formative and summative
assessments. Student learning will be measured through homework and assessments
though not always graded. Instruction as a unit progresses will be dependent on how well
students are learning the material. I will have a late work pass that students can utilize

one time. It is available for when life gets hectic and as a reassurance to them that I
understand that sometimes happens.

Classroom Layout
My desk will be placed so that it is visible from the door. I want to be able to see
into the hallway, but I also want to be seen from the hallway so students feel comfortable
coming into the classroom. I want the desks to be split into two sides so that a table can
be set up for the projector and also to give me the space to walk down the middle of the
classroom. While I expect students to make good choices I realize I will need to use
proximity at times to remind them of their behavior expectations. This also gives students
to see half the class when they are engaged in a group discussion, which is important for
building relationships. An area will be established for turning in paperwork and an area to
pick-up paperwork. I would like a separate work space where students can work if
needed or if I need to separate a student from the group.

Monitoring the Classroom and Responding to Student Misbehavior


My first approach to misbehavior will likely be nonverbal making eye contact,
shaking my head slightly, making a disapproving face, or using proximity. Next, Im
going to use the students name to either make a comment (Johnny, please take a seat.) or
ask a question (Do you need help with something, Johnny?). These will all be done in a
respectful manner. If it continues I will use the Love and Logic approach of something
like, Just because I like you, do you think I should let you do that? Something that is
non-threatening or confrontational.
Unacceptable behaviors are any physical harm and bullying. Name-calling and
foul language will also not be accepted. Disrupting class or cheating will also be
confronted. Consequences will have to be administered, but they will be given with
empathy and understanding. I will make it clear Im addressing the behavior and not
judging them as an individual.

Parents as Partners
I strongly believe in communicating with parents. I want to have a family survey
available so they can tell me about themselves and their students. I plan to incorporate
either monthly newsletters or unit-timed newsletters. I want parents to know what their
students are learning about and how they can help encourage that learning at home. It will
also give me an opportunity to highlight classroom accomplishments.
I plan to contact parents with both good and bad news about their students. A
quick email to a parent acknowledging their students hard work is an easy way to build a
positive relationship. Parents will also need to be contacted if their student has behavior
issues or concerns with their work. These conversations will be over the phone or in

person depending on the severity of the situation and preference of the parent. An email
in those cases might minimize the concern or could lead to misunderstandings.