October 25, 2017

Classroom Management Tools

As we integrate more mobile devices into our classrooms, one question that may arise is, how do I manage and facilitate student collaboration while encouraging  productive work time?  Classroom management at its core has not changed, however the focus has shifted  and  has begun to take on a new look.

One of the best places to start when thinking about classroom management and technology is to understand what your end goal is, as well as your instructional goal when using technology. Implementing an effective classroom management plan will maximize your student's learning experience and lessen the need for you to intervene with every issue that arises.

Below are some key elements of classroom management that may help along the journey of integrating.

Core Components of Classroom Management

Classroom Structure 

Something to take a close look at when thinking of management is knowing and understanding your teaching style and how it fits in with students' learning style. Creating a space that is conducive for all parties allows for structure when adding anything new such as mobile devices

Teaching Expectations

Explicit instruction, modeling, practice, and consistency are a crucial piece to a classroom management plan. A level of accountability can be created by allowing students to help build classroom expectations and procedures. There will be some things that are non-negotiable (i.e. Chromebook care, procedures for storage, etc.) but allowing students to have a voice and collaborate builds a climate of mutual respect.

Process of Action

Implementation requires involvement by everyone involved. It is essential to have a plan of action to redirect inappropriate behavior and a reteaching model in place for those students who continuously disrupt the learning environment. It is very meaningful to focus on those students who exhibit good behavior and celebrate the positive.


OKCPS Spotlight

Allow me to introduce to you three OKCPS Teachers who have had success with classroom management and technology integration. Having a thorough classroom management plan and follow through has allowed these teachers to provide highly engaged atmospheres for their students to construct, explore and collaborate to accomplish great things.

Mrs. Pearson-6th Grade Teacher Prairie Queen Elementary

Mrs. Pearson's classroom is structured for students to work collaboratively while also maintaining a space for individualized work. When observing her classroom, it is apparent that expectations and procedures are in place. Students are aware of her expectations and follow through with very little redirection and input from her.

During my visit to Mrs. Pearson's classroom, there was an incident with a Chromebook that had broken. Mrs. Pearson took a few seconds to gently remind her students of what to do if they see, notice, or cause damage to a piece of technology. She was seamless in her execution of her reminder and was able to quickly move on with her lesson for the day. This incident was a clear representation that when procedures and management are in place, there is little loss to instructional time.

Mrs. O'Donnell-1st Grade and Ms. Passmore-2nd GradeParmelee Elementary

Mrs. O'Donnell
Both teachers are using Class Dojo as a management and incentive tool for their classrooms. Students are very receptive and responsive to this tool and are very eager to receive "Dojo Points" for their positive behaviors.

During my visit with Mrs. O'Donnell's class, I noticed that as her students were very engaged in individual tasks, her students were receiving points. As she worked with her students at her guiding reading table she was able to quickly scan, assess the students who were making appropriate choices, give points and continue her instruction. All of her students were engaged in various guided reading activities.

Ms. Passmore
Along with using Class Dojo, Ms. Passmore has her procedures and incentives chart prominently placed at the front of her room. She has provided her students tangible goals to work towards and a reminder of why they are earning "Dojo points".It was very evident during my visit that her management and procedures were strongly in place. Her students were engaged in a collaborative atmosphere and were eager to learn.

There are many wonderful educators in OKCPS, and I have had the opportunity to  meet three of them. These teachers have classroom management in full swing and their students are highly engaged. Students are allowed to collaborate with each other and are being held accountable for their behavior in the classroom. When classroom management, expectations, and procedures are put into place, teachers have the opportunity to become facilitators of learning rather than "holders of knowledge"

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