It is inevitable…you are going to run into a student (probably more than one) that drives you insane. In fact, most teachers leave the profession because they cannot deal with disruptive and disrespectful students. In this section, I am going to identify the main types of time-stealers, and give suggestions as to how to deal with each of them.
Before I begin, I am going to give you a suggestion as to how NOT to handle students who get on your last nerve. Do not become “The Screamer”. If any of you have played a sport, you can probably remember a coach that you had who was a screamer. You will also remember that the coach’s effectiveness diminished over time, and the end result was that you and your teammates learned to “tune out” the coach. The same thing will happen to you in your classroom if you become a screamer. In the Good Ol’ Days, screamers earned most of their effectiveness because (in the back of your mind) you never knew if the screamer would lose control of himself and give you a slap across the back of your head. In the 21st Century, students are well aware that you cannot touch them. Therefore, the only purpose your screaming serves is to amuse and entertain the students. I can remember students who used to compete to be the one to “set the teacher off” first. It became a fun game for them. You do not want that to happen to you. Effective teachers are calm, kind, and consistent, and students will respect you as a teacher if you calmly deal with disruptive students in your classroom. With that in mind, here are a few strategies to try when you are faced with one of these “stereotypical” classroom time-stealers...just click on the blue link to read strategies for each.
2. The Clown
3. The Bully
8. Drama Queen
10. The Wanderer
Please remember that these ideas are merely suggestions that you can use to deal with disruptive students. These techniques have worked for me during my years in the classroom, and I have seen them work for teachers that I mentored through the years. If you try these techniques and they fail, don’t panic. Remain calm, kind, and consistent, and simply fall back on your discipline plan. You DO have a discipline plan, don’t you? If you don’t have a discipline plan, you will have an uphill battle as a teacher of any grade level. Speaking of discipline plans, I have a great discipline plan included in my “New Teacher Survival Kit” in another section of newteacherhelp.com. The Survival Kit not only includes a discipline plan, it also has a script for making it through the first day of school, a list of “Trigger Words” that you should never use to describe a student to his/her parent, suggestions to keep parents on your side, and a list of techniques to “ace” your first teacher evaluation. I have seen other help kits offered on the internet for as much as $190…can you believe it? I am practically giving them away for $20. This is not a misprint, I said $20. Don’t let the price fool you…this information is great for new teachers, student teachers, and veteran teachers who want to step their game up a notch.