As the year winds down (Hallelujah), I explore ways to keep students engaged and up my level of activity. It seems that our students get a bit squirrelly, and we go in to full on survival mode. There are some tried and true tips that help any time of year, but in searching for help, I came across these notes from a Professional Development. Who knew? A Professional Development that I actually learned from. You just never know, right?
“How to Become a More Credible Teacher” Dr. William Haskins
I am paraphrasing some of this, just to glean that points from the article that I have that really seem to make a difference.
- Earn trust by showing trust towards pupils.
Kathy paraphrase and comment: You get what you give. You reap what you sow. This does not mean be a pushover or a door mat.
- Introduce sources that are trusted by pupils.
- Appear highly organized
- Deliver a message that is as free from errors as possible
- Prepare thoroughly
Kathy comment: hours of organization will cut down on discipline problems-those hours are worth it
- When possible show students how this lesson is relevant to life
- Develop a powerful style of speaking–no “ok” or “you know” Command your classroom
- Establish eye contact-look them babies in the eye
- Relax- I say all the time “Your stress doesn’t become my stress”, then help students with problem solutions. I also say “It is not about the messes and problems that we make, but how will we recover? How will we fix this?” I remind them that we are a work in progress and that progress sometimes takes a lot of work.
- Move around the classroom-no barriers between us and students
Now, enjoy this beach picture. It’s our happy place. Go there. Load up the chocolate, coffee…whatever it takes. Spring Break is here-enjoy, then push forward.
Of course, pray everyday before you enter that classroom. The battle is the Lord’s (2 Chronicles 20:15)