Never Smile Before Christmas

This is from a blog that I follow pretty closely. I really appreciate the humour that Chris Pearce puts in his comics as well as his teaching (Of course I haven’t seen him TEACH but I can imagine, right?).

All credit is due to Chris Pearce and his lovely blog Teachable Moments.

This totally hits up the whole classroom management thing. I’ll admit that I thought I had it. I had gotten all the answers right in university regarding what to do in most situations that could arise in my classroom. How wrong was I?

The first few weeks are a honeymoon. Kids are great and follow the rules you have successful lessons and everything is going swell. Then that next week comes. My Grade 1s kept it together for another week or so, my Grade 2s went to hell in a hand basket. I almost cried after school one day I felt things went so unsuccessfully. They were so unfocused and I wasn’t getting through my lessons (which was actually due to overplanning, which was a relief). Turns out I just hadn’t spent enough time going over the classroom procedures and what I expected from them. So in the end I had to backtrack and practice what I wanted to see in the classrooom.

To connect this to the comic earlier, I didn’t smile for almost a week. That was torture for me. I’d like to think of myself as a friendly, open and warm person. Smiling is my thing. It was so incredibly hard to not be what I had been in the past few weeks, but did I ever get a reaction. It also happened to be the one I wanted. My students responded SO well to that week of Mrs.M&M being stern. I should also mention that I kinda threw my lesson plans to the wind and really focused on attitude. This meant that if I saw a behaviour that was unacceptable I would stop and address it and solved the problem. So I made the choice to be a little behind on my schedule but it was worth it. Don’t get me wrong, everything is not perfect, but it is certainly much better in my classroom. So the lesson is maybe don’t smile until October. 🙂