Sunday, May 27, 2012

How do management parameters help make lessons more effective?

Throughout history there have been very good teachers, and there have also been some bad ones. Nevertheless, neither do the best teachers have accomplished the difficult task of having a perfect classroom with the perfect students. There have always existed some troubles or incidents that make teachers get out of their way, and it will continue like that for ever since it doesn’t exist any perfect class. It is not a secret that teaching is a so very difficult task, but if applied some classroom management parameters, it becomes less difficult, not easy, for anyone who teaches.

Classroom management is very important since if a teacher wants his or her students to learn, he or she has to have enough character as to assume that it is his or her responsibility to maintain the class in a way that the students can learn according to their needs and also to their goals. But how can that be achieved? The most highlight parameters to maintain the students actively participating and consciously paying attention in a class are Attention, Momentum, Space, Time, Routine, and Discipline. Below, it is a short but sufficient description of each of those parameters.
Attention is the fact that both the students and the teacher have to be focused on what is being developed in the class. It means that the teacher is going to focus on the students, and the students have to be focused on what the teacher is saying or doing. Nevertheless to catch the students´ attention is not easy, and thus, the other parameters have to be applied to reach the objective, to have a good class.
To catch or to maintain the students´ attention, it will be necessary that the teacher know how to manage well his or her time in the activities he or she is going to develop. If an easy explanation that was supposed to finish in five minutes is extended to 10 or 15 minutes, it means that the teacher is not playing well with the time and the students will get bored easily. For avoiding that, the teacher should anticipate those little pitfalls that the class could present and have a plan B – It is called anticipation, one of class momentum´s branches.

In the momentum in which attention is lost, the teacher has to react quickly to have his or her students on the right track again; that´s why the teacher has to be ready for any intrusion. Moreover, if the teacher didn’t administrated well the class time and some time is missing at the end, a filler would the best option to hide that left time. Furthermore, the teacher has to make sure that he or she is making good transitions throughout the class since that will help him or her to maintain the students in the right way, and not lost if the transitions hadn’t been well applied.

In addition, the teacher has to seriously consider the space he or she has to develop in a good way the activities he or she has prepared. There are certain ways in which the seats can be arranged to perform different activities, but it will depends on the purpose of each. If a test is going to be held, the perfect way will be to place the desks in straight lines, and if a discussion or debate is going to take place, the ideal position will be the auditory position, in which the students form a semi circle.
 Another important fact to take into account is that students hate routines; therefore the teacher has to be very careful not to fall into that. The teacher has to try different ways to teach his or her classes; for example, one day he or she can start with a discussion, and the other day he or she can start with the solving of a homework assignment – the purpose is not to become monotonous.

And finally, the teacher has to know how and when to apply discipline because if not, the students will think that they are the ones who rule in the classroom and will do whatever they want. The teacher is not the boss but the leader of the class, and as a leader, he or she has to make his or her students respect his or her statements in order not to be like an army but like a pacific alliance.

Undoubtedly, it doesn’t work well at the first time, but the teacher has to insist because some day his or her students will understand and will stop doing the bad things they used to do. Teaching is like that, and it won´t change; nonetheless, that is the reason why teachers exist, to do what other people don’t like to do, lead other people´s lives to the right track.

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