Thursday, July 17, 2014

Day 17: Classroom Management Strategy

Day 17 of the blogging challenge:
Share a great classroom management strategy

If there is one thing I think works well in my classroom, its my classroom jobs. Here's the deal...I don't do anything in my classroom that students can do for themselves. I give my students the responsibilities of "running" our class smoothly. I'm hoping to have my Classroom Jobs bundle up on TpT by this evening (when my little monster goes to bed!) but I thought I'd leave you with the list of things I have jobs for:

-cleaning up breakfast (we have breakfast in the classroom as part of a Title 1 grant) 
-passing out journals, folders, supplies, etc.
-picking up supplies
-checking if homework is completed
-collating papers in alphabetical order (ain't nobody got time for that!) 
-keeping the classroom library in order
-turning on/off lights
-opening doors
-checking for badges and uniform (we wear polos and khaki/navy bottoms in our district) 
-managing time and the calendar
-resetting the room between transitions
-cleaning the room
-"paying" people for their jobs 
-taking care of handouts and notes for absent students
-taking attendance
-"fixing" any minor technology issues 
-anything else I need :) 

By the time students are in 3rd grade and older, they can and need some actual responsibilities in the classroom. I "pay" my kids every other week [I've previously used tickets but I'm considering Beth Newingham's flipbook with tally marks]. If you want the whole "treasure box", go for it but I have students use their tickets for pencils (do they EAT those things?!), extra trips to their locker (for who knows what...), misbehaving, not being in uniform, etc. OR if they want to spend their tickets on awesome stuff like pencil erasers, lunch in the classroom with the best teacher ever, extra time on the computer, stuff like that, they can! Many other teachers always comment on how my classroom is like a well-oiled machine and that's because I don't do anything but TEACH :) ok, and all that other stuff we have to do...but when the kids are there, I shouldn't be wasting my time passing out papers and running to hold doors open for them. Here's the key to my jobs...I only {sometimes} change them at the semester mark. Yep, the kids have the jobs for 4-5 months. Let's be honest, in the real world, do we change jobs every week? Hopefully why would you do it in your classroom? Many times, by the semester the kids like their jobs and know them so well, they decide as a class to keep their same jobs. It's awesome!  So that's my advice/management strategy: Get some GOOD classroom jobs and stick with them! 
Check my TpT store [later]: Confessions of a Texas Teachaholic for the job bundle if you want me to do the hard work for you! (Job list with explanation for subs, you and your students, powerpoint to introduce students to the jobs, and job "labels" if you want to display the job list in your room!) 

Don't forget to follow me on Bloglovin! I finally reached double digit followers :) [Stop laughing at me!]


  1. I love how you explained... and I try not to do things my students can do either... at second grade. :) I am interested in the tally mark flip book you mentioned. I'll have to look that up. I don't usually "pay" my kids for their jobs, but that's a good real-world connection. Do your students apply for their jobs (since they last for several months)? Also, do you make sure everyone has a job? Thanks for sharing!
    Sarah from Mrs. Jones Teaches :o)

    1. Hey Sarah! This is where I read about Beth Newingham's classroom economy with the tally marks (debits/credits)

      Yes, my kids DO apply for their jobs! In my "intro to jobs" powerpoint, I always include the characteristics needed for someone who is interested in this job (i.e. organized, excellent attendance, etc.) so that they can find something that best suits them. And yes, everyone does have a job! If I notice someone struggling at completing their responsibilities, I put them on "probation" and the Go2Guy (he's my "anything" job) models how to do it. If they can no longer fulfill a job appropriately, they are fired. :( [That rarely happens because they want those tickets!]

  2. I like your point about keeping the same job for an extended period of time. Do you have former job holders train the new ones?

    1. I don't usually "officially" have them train the new ones but the old ones are always more than willing to point out HOW the job should be done :) I may have to try calling it training and be more purposeful!

  3. Love this post! And yes, I totally agree - don't do anything for the students they can do for themselves!