As we move into 2020, what are the twelve biggest changes you can make in your classroom that will improve not only it’s efficiency but your focus as a teacher on essential skills such as independence and time management.
1. Trust children enough to be able to go to the toilet without asking for permission first – this sets the level of trust in any classroom and it’s very simple, you don’t need that power over their bladder.
2. Teaching with so much passion that your children will want to continue their learning at home rather than setting homework – this is a great indicator and self reflection tool for any teacher, if you inspired your children enough there’s no need for homework, they’ll continue organically.
3. Changing your classroom rules, to a human code of conduct – this teaches empathy, involves the students and allows them to understand the fundamental rights of all humans.
4. Allowing children to sit where they want – by allowing this you enable choice, freedom and of course collaboration. No matter how well you know your students you’ll never know what is really going on in the background. Allow them to sit where they like and make those mistakes etc.
5. Preparing the classroom before the children enter – you want them to walk in everyday saying, “wow what are all these insects etc” you’ve got them hooked without saying a word. Preparation is 99% of a good lesson.
6. Allowing children to represent their work however they choose – by setting assignments with the instruction “and I don’t mind how you represent your research!” You allow children to find their niche, the future architect will always come back with a model, fuel their passions.
7. Discuss progress and goals, rather than giving out stars, stickers, charts or badges for achievement – you can only ever compare a child to who they were yesterday, not to anyone else in the class. The reward for their effort should be real, tangible and determined by them.
8. Allow children to indulge their curiosity – if they have a natural curiosity in something, allow them time to investigate. You can always tie it into the curriculum somehow.
9. Speaking quietly and calmly – if you want your children to act calmly and responsibly do that. “Model the behaviour you wish to view in your children.”
10. Asking for honest feedback on your teaching technique – your greatest critics are your students. Give them a voice and ask them how they prefer to be taught.
11. Allow children to move around during each lesson – everyone needs to move around. Incorporate time in every lesson when freedom to move is included.
12. Explain to the children the “real” point of the lesson you are about to deliver – make it the first thing you do each lesson to inform your students of the whole point in learning this from a life lesson perspective. It’s not so you can pass a test, it’s because this will help you later in life.
See how many you can change to improve the direction of your classroom today and let go of the reigns of power and control.
“Education is freedom, and it starts with the teacher.”
#education #montessori #teacher