Have you ever had that one class that just slips out of control so much more easily than all the others? You change the seating chart, you review and adjust your discipline plan, you talk to administrators and call parents. Yet, more often than not, this class just won’t get with the program.
I’ve had that one class every single year I’ve taught.
I like all the students. There are some very strong kids in there who I am sure are going to be capable, formidable leaders of our world in the next couple of decades. I feel bad for them when they continue to mess up and have to suffer consequences like serving lunch detention or in-school detention repeatedly. But I also know that they must pay attention and not disrupt others in class in order for everyone to have the opportunity to learn.
I have gone over my rules and procedures more times than I can count — with myself, with my administrators and with my department heads. I give students clear instructions, I redirect them, and then I give them consequences. Some students just insist on continuing talking during independent working times (which last no longer than 10 minutes) or blurting out random comments during discussion times. Other students insist on allowing those students to distract them. Eventually, those who continue to violate the rules start getting frustrated and mad — at me.
I love teaching, I love my students. Some days, after “that one class,” I am dead tired.
I am a secondary English Language Arts teacher, a University of Oklahoma student working on my Master’s of Education in Instructional Leadership and Academic Curriculum with an concentration in English Education, and a NBPTS candidate. I am constantly seeking ways to amplify my students’ voices and choices.