4 Classroom Management Tips for New Teachers
Home » Education

4 Classroom Management Tips for New Teachers

Written by 21 November 2012

The following is a guest blog post from Maria Rainier.

4 Classroom Management Tips for New Teachers

If you are just starting off the school year as a relatively inexperienced teacher, you may be feeling nervous about it all. As a former teacher, I can say with conviction that there's nothing more nerve-racking than being in a room with twenty or more young people, all looking to you for guidance, support, and knowledge. While the actually process of teaching and figuring out the curriculum is a challenge unto itself, managing the classroom is by far the most important priority if the rest is to fall into place. Here are some tips based on my experience teaching fourth, fifth, and seventh grade.

1. Delineate the rules from day one and be consistent with them throughout the year.

Having very specific rules, and making them clear from the get go, is absolutely instrumental in establishing a well-managed classroom. I found that when I didn't make rules clear from the very beginning, and didn't enforce them consistently, my students could easily, and justifiably, give the excuse that ""they didn't know."" Of course, classroom rules are up to you, but generally I kept mine pretty standard and not too harsh. I laid out my grading policies, homework policies, late policies, etc., and the kids stuck to them because the rules were easy to remember. I hung a sign with the rules by the chalkboard, and I also gave each of them their own copy.

2. Create an atmosphere that's conducive to individualized attention.

Depending on the size of your class, it's not always easy to pay individual attention to each and every student. But there are many things you can do to set up your classroom such that you maximize the chances of doing so. I typically rearrange seating arrangements throughout the year so that you don't have the same students sitting in the back, and so that different students get a chance to know each other and aren't just sitting next to their friends the whole time. Be sure to memorize your students' names from the very first day, and make it your mission to get to know them each individually—their likes and dislikes, their academic and personal strengths and weaknesses, their dreams, etc.

3. Encourage classroom discussion among all students.

Classroom discussion, in my opinion, is the most powerful tool for building self-esteem, one that I think too few teachers employ on a daily basis. When you can inspire stimulating discussion in the classroom, students begin to pay attention and learn from their fellow students. Spurring discussion can be quite difficult, especially since it's almost always the case that there are some painfully shy students and other students who love to grandstand. Practice moderating a discussion by being gently encouraging with the shy students. Call on different students but don't make it into an experience that's frightening or nerve-racking for them.

4. Don't beat yourself up if you've had a hard day. It comes with the territory of teaching.

Some days, it will be difficult to manage your classroom and teach lessons effectively. Maybe you'll have to deal with more behavioral problems than you ever thought possible. At the end of the day, you'll feel exhausted and as though you maybe failed your students. Understand that teachers, even the seasoned pros, deal with this feeling constantly. Don't beat yourself up about it. Take it one day at a time, and really revel in your victories so that those tough times are just another challenge to overcome, not a failure. Good luck!

About the Author:

Maria Rainier fell in love with blogging before it was cool, and now she’s lucky enough to make a living out of it. She generally writes about subjects related to education, parenting, personal finance, and more. You can read more of her writing on her blog featured on http://www.onlinedegrees.org/. Please share your comments with her!

P.S. Want to have your blog post featured by SimpleK12 like Maria? Click here to find out how you can be a SimpleK12 Guest Blogger too.

Share this post with your friends and colleagues:
4 Classroom Management Tips for New Teachers

2 Comments »

  • Maryann Hanley-Pereira said:

    Excellent article. It is so true that you have to set up standards of behavior and curriculum very early in the year and make sure these expectations are met. Many new teachers fail to do this early in the year.

  • Brett Daniels said:

    Great post and tips. I am a fairly new teacher and it’s easy to get frustrated and question my passion for teaching. I just read a great book you might like, it’s called “Teach Like A PIRATE” by Dave Burgess. You can check him out and get the book right from the website http://daveburgess.com/. It’s a wonderful read. Thanks for the post and all of these helpful tips!