Hey, everyone, it’s James, and I’m creating this video in response to a video that I came across on my Facebook timeline involving classroom management. So I’m going to share clip of the video right now. [Teacher attempting to quiet a noisy classroom]. So I thought this video was a little bit funny based just on my years of experience because I’m sure many veteran teachers have had at least one class – well, I actuall I have a class like this right now; my last period of the day. Um every Tuesday, Thursday. They drive me a little bit bonkers, but it’s one of these classes where you have to put a lot of time effort and energy into getting them to settle down and refocus back on what you want them to do. Now, as I was scrolling through the comments section of this particular video, I noticed that there were many people who, whether they are about to embark on their teaching profession or people who are actually teachers right now, mid-year, they were asking for strategies to deal with the situation like this. Now, the video was really really exaggerated; however, I can remember my very first year teaching, I had a class like this. They were 10th graders and many students in that class knew each other and I remember the first day of school like students are throwing things across the room and they were like shouting and it was really, really loud and I just remember thinking, “OH MY GOD… like…this… cannot be…my class for the remainder of the year; like I don’t think I’d be able to make it. And I remember that Friday, the end of the week, the assistant principal came in – much bigger guy that I am and like, he was shouting at the students. The students were shouting at him and I’m like I don’t think I’m gonna be able to make it. But one of the things that I was able to do successfully and one of my strengths is building rapport with students. So i quickly memorized their names and one of the ways that I did this was, I take pictures of my classroom, of my students in action and I like to post them around my room and outside my room so that way people when they visit my classroom if we just happen to be taking notes that can look around and see all the things that we’ve done when they have not been there. And it’s just a great memory for my students to see. So memorizing the names as quickly as possible so as I said taking pictures and then over the weekend of that first week I will study the pictures like crazy and memorize the name so that when they come in the following week i’m already at the door greeting them by there name. Hey, you know, hey James are you doing? Oh, I like those shoes, blah, blah, blah. One of the other things that I just said is because I take pictures and I post them around the room students like that and it builds a sense of community for my classroom. So, they really enjoy seeing themselves in action and learning and so that has helped me establish a very positive environment in my classroom. The next thing that I would say is to meet the students where they’re at. So one of the things that I will do is I won’t wait for students to come to me for tutoring I will go find them. So, if i see students out in the courtyard or in the cafeteria and it’s like seven o’clock in the morning and they’re there when I’m there ok let’s go to my room, or if it’s something that i can quickly do without like any, you know, paper or a periodic table because I teach science, I will sit down where they’re at and I will tutor them 1-on-1, or I’ll give some explanations or I’ll have them pull out their notebook and will write down on a piece of paper and I can explain to them right there. Many of my students have told me that they have appreciated the fact that I went out of my way to help them and oftentimes, those students after a couple of sessions they will come to my classroom on their own without me having to go find them or put them when I see them. Now some teachers may, may not agree with that. I remember one time as the science specialist I was doing the PD and I shared that and one of the teachers like, “I’m not doing that”. Ok, again it’s a strategy that I’m sharing a strategy that I use teaching at a high-needs campus where students have gaps in their learning and I’m trying to teach them either biology chemistry and they’re struggling but it was a way for me to build rapport, so that way in a situation like you saw in the video when I need them to refocus they’re more willing to do that because they know that I really care about their success and so when they hear me saying, “Ladies and gentlemen. I need for you to refocus on me,” they’re more willing to do that. Another thing that I will say that I utilize is using my conference period so we all have a confer-, well, hopefully we all have a conference period – that you can use to go to another class period that they’re in and pull them out. Now, I will say that you want to make sure that you contact the teacher ahead of time to let them know, “hey, would it be okay for me to pull James out of the classroom and speak with him for about two minutes.” And when I, when I’ve done this in the past, I don’t just start off with negative. I will start off with some positive things and then I wll then go to, “hey, you know a lot of times when i try to get the attention of the class, one of the things that I noticed is that you’re talking while I’m trying to get instructions; so one of the things that I need for you to do within the first five seconds, I need for you to calm yourself and refocus, so that way I can give the instructions and then if it is appropriate then you can go back to talking so long as though you’re doing your work”. I found that those conversations, those one-on-one conversations with students has helped. Another thing that I’ve done is I…I’ve pulled groups of students all out at the same time. So if I know if there’s a small group of students that tend to investigate the entire class and get them riled up I’ll pull all…let’s say, for example, all five students, “I need all five of you to go out in the hallway”. Same thing…”you guys aren’t in trouble, however, I need for you all to help me understand because i’m trying to provide instructions to help you all be successful but you all continuing to talk while I’m talking. So if some…one of you can help me understand that, that would be great. A lot of times they just look down at the ground because they know that they’re wrong and also because I’ve built that rapport, it hits a little bit or it stings a little bit more for them because they know that they shouldn’t be doing and I have that relationship with them so that way when I do sort of lay in to them. I do it like in a very calm way. I don’t have to shout at the students to get my point across. I can do it very calmly, succinctly…get my point across. Let them know that I’m disappointed in their behavior…have them go back into the classroom. So don’t be afraid to send a student outside, or to send a couple students outside but you want to make sure that you immediately go behind them and have that discussion with them while the other students… you’ve said, “okay, I need for you [class] to do this next problem and I’ll be right back”. Another thing that you can do is visit them during their…not visit them…go to their…any games or concerts that they may be a part of in terms of extracurricular activities. A lot of students…that will be another way that you can build rapport with your students is by attending a game. Now, you don’t go to every single game. Go to one or two and students would definitely appreciate that because it shows that you’re interested in them beyond just the classroom. Another thing that I do is I like to play music in my class. Different types of genres, different types of decades. It could be soundtrack music. It can be nature, ambient music. But the students tend to like that music…or like the idea that I play music in class and that gets them focused when they’re doing an activity and then when I need to call them, I just lower the music I say, “Ladies and gentlemen, can I have your attention real quick”. And they will refocus. So I think, as far as all the strategies, I think that’s it. I don’t think I’ve left anything out. Oh, I didn’t leave one thing out. The most important thing. Now in the video this teacher used a whole bunch of different class signals. You want to make sure as with any of your expectations and policies, is that you are consistent. So… in my case, my classroom signal is: Ladies and Gentlemen. I teach high school and so, Ladies and Gentlemen, I say that and I use a more raised tone when I’m saying it to the class, or projected tone, when I’m saying this is the class. A lot of times they know within five seconds they need to quiet down and refocus. I don’t talk while they’re talking because it gives off the perception that what you have to say is not important. Like if the teacher is not stopping me and I am continuing to talk while he or she is talking, well…why should I even care. They don’t care. Right? So you want to make sure that you’re consistent in whatever signal that you try to utilize. That you consistently enforce it and that way you pull any students that are not following that signal, you pull them out and you have that discussion. So, whether you pull a group of students out at the same time or you visit them one-on-on; whether it’s out in the courtyard or during a conference period, that you let students know that when they hear that class signal that they need to stop what they’re doing and they need to refocus. Hopefully if there’s at least one thing in this video that you liked, or resonated with you; so if there was, then make sure to hit that LIKE button and if you haven’t already done so make sure to subscribe so that way you can Bond with James. As always, thanks for watching!