Sunday, 18 November 2012

Classroom Management with Marbles

Ohh.. classroom management.. I can't count the amount of times I have heard discussions about this in the past year and a half, yet still I am working on that in my classroom.  I have been blessed with mostly well-behaved students for my first year of teaching, yet I still find that this is one area I need to work on.  

Recently, I was able to attend a conference for teachers with a number of different workshops.  There were many things that stuck out to me, some of which I will possibly blog about at a later time.  I attended a workshop for Grade 2 teachers and at this workshop our many focus was on (of course) classroom management.  The one idea that really stuck out to me in this discussion was the idea of having a Marble Jar in the classroom to enforce good behaviour.  The idea is that there is a jar at the front of the classroom with a bag of marbles beside it.  Any time exceptionally good behaviour is noticed from the class as a whole, you can feel free to add marbles to the jar.  Any time the class is not listening or obeying instructions, marbles can be taken away.  Once the jar is filled the whole class will be allowed to have a party. (I personally would have a class game or community building activity we could do for an afternoon.)

I like this idea for two reasons.  One: it includes the class as a whole.  Therefore the class must work together in order to earn marbles.  This promotes community in the classroom and reminds the students that their actions impact others, not only themselves.  Two: it is a visual reminder at the front of the room.  

On Pinterest I also came across this visual printout to remind students how they can fill the jar:  

I love all of these ways in which the jar can be filled!

I hope to start this new classroom management strategy within the next two weeks.  I will update with the results!