Okay, so it’s the first day of school and you have 25 precious little students staring at you…what are they thinking? What are YOU thinking? You are all probably thinking about how this whole new situation is going to work out. Children in the primary grades are usually silent upon entering, because this situation is new to them. It makes you think, “Wow! This is going to be a great group…look how sweet and quite and still they are being—and they are all getting along!” Well, this could very well be true, but before anyone gets too comfortable, it’s important to “lay down the law”. Now I’m not saying that you should wear your military uniform, I’m just encouraging you to establish authority through classroom management very early on. Here are some of my tips, tricks, and ideas for managing a classroom…

1. First things first- TELL THEM THEY ARE LOVED AND THEY ARE SPECIAL. These little ones are most likely going to put you on a huge pedestal and they need to feel that you notice that. I always tell them that I love them now and I will love them everyday from now on. There might be some things I don’t particularly like, but regardless, they need to know they can always come to me and I will always listen. I will always treat them the way I’d like to be treated and I tell them that I expect the same (towards myself and towards one another).
You Are Special

This is a great book that I always read on the first day. After I read it, the children write about what makes them special.

2. RULES, RESPONSIBILITIES, PRIVELEGES…We usually have a “pow-wow” pretty early in the day on the first day of school. I let them know that they will have so much fun in my classroom (I will sing, dance, wiggle, laugh, etc…) as long as they can handle it. I have the children tell me what they feel are good classroom rules, and then I show them my list. From this point on, whenever they break a rule, they have walk to the rule chart, tell me which rule they broke and how they broke it. They don’t like this and it usually really works! We also talk about how certain things are privileges. We do a chart that lists the differences between rights and privileges…

Multisensory Strategies: Lessons and Classroom Management Techniques to Reach and Teach All Learners

Multisensory Strategies

This is a neat book from Scholastic to use if you are teacher like me- one that really seeks to teach to the senses. I try to include all sorts of learning styles and senses into my lessons (we are always into something!) There are specific ways to go about having an active but controlled classroom and this book will help to get you there!

3. BE POSITIVE AS MUCH AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN! Since day one of my personally teaching career, I have always tried to stay as positive as possible. The children truly respond to praise and will thrive upon it. My students move clips—they all begin on “Sunny Day” (great day!), and most of them stay there. If misbehavior occurs, they are warned, and from there on they move clips (windy day, cloudy day, rainy day—with consequences for each). For every negative note I send home, I try to send home 2 positive notes (brag notes). The children also know that I try to choose at least one child a week to “phone brag” on. I call up the parents and just let them know how great their child is doing. ALL children would love to have their parents praise them for positive behaviors at school. I also award “warm fuzzies” to the children when I’m proud of them. These are just a few ideas to improve classroom management…

The following book is a great way to help you include positive talk into your own classroom!

Positive Teacher Talk for Better Classroom Management

This book gives many situations and scenarios that happen in a typical classroom and suggestions for settling the issue in a positive way!!

Positive Discipline: A Teacher’s A-Z Guide

This is a wonderful article from Instructor in which 9 teachers share their ideas and experiences about what they feel works to establish classroom management from the very beginning!
http://content.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3609

If you have other ideas or tips for classroom mangement, please share them below!





2 Responses to “Classroom Management for Primary Students”

  1. Becky Says:

    I like your idea of using the weather for your classroom management. What are your consequences for each time a student has to change to a different type of weather?

  2. Jill Says:

    The new push in positive school climates is to work backward on that chart thing…. I don’t do it and don’t care for the card thing but if you must use it start everyone at a positive level and have kids work toward the highest level. This promotes positive behavior and does not cause any emotional damage on the students. I like this better than pulling cards or something similar. Everyone is a winner…. and it keeps kids working to meet higher goals. Let kids be rewarded for the good behavior and don’t focus your energy on their poor choices. Kids learn quickly that your really want to catch them being good.

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