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Behaviour, control, respect and value

Discussion in 'Behaviour' started by minnieminx, Jun 9, 2011.

  1. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Goodness, you have been unlucky as I have never seen any who do any such thing in 15 years. Parents yes, but not teachers.
    I have that too these days. Amuses me no end, but is purely down to being known in the school and to experience and age.
    Except that classrooms are not, and cannot be, fully democratic. You are the teacher and sometimes you have to issue instructions for children to comply with purely 'because you say so'. And then you have to enforce that.

    This does not mean that you don't respect them, but that you are in charge.
     
  2. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    Hi Delbertino.
    You sound as if you are going about so may things in just the right way, building relationships and developing emotional intelligence. Keep the faith in that!
    However, think of behaviour management as a continuum: you have to establish certain parameters first, before you build greater awareness. Some children will get what you're trying to do straight away; others will take time, and ill need the structures of a clear positive assertive classroom as a foundation.
    I talk about this in relation to Restorative Practices here
    https://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6076825
    You might find some of what is said relevant to your situation.
     
  3. Random175

    Random175 New commenter

    I think you may come to realise that many people are really stuck emotionally as to how they felt as a teenager and cannot look back on those years through mature eyes. They should have a pen and a pencil. They may only remember feeling bad about not having one. Well feeling bad often makes you do the right thing.
     
  4. Thanks to those replie that actually considered the issue. i'm not interested in debating the conept of democracy etc int he classroom, looking for those people who try to apply it, and emotional learning, and what ideas/experiences they've had.
    Why should schools be democratic? I think the question is mroe why aren't they or why shouldn't they? Lets not repeat the mistakes of the past just because we've had to endure them. They world will never change if we teach kids to apply the same selfish power base structures to their lvies that apply to ours.

     
  5. Cervinia

    Cervinia Occasional commenter

    Students aren't 'equal' to teachers. That doesn't mean they shouldn't be respected.

    Good luck with that.
     
  6. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    Absolutely agree with you on that. How we get there is what needs to be considered.

     
  7. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    But you need to debate the why/why not question.

    A great many teachers start out just like you trying to change the world, but realise that they then struggle with maintaining good behaviour and therefore good learning.

    My class do think I respect them, that I listen to their point of view, that I understand and try to meet their emotional needs as well as their academic, that their ideas are listened to and often tried. I know this because we do anonymous questionnaires a few times a year when we ask just such questions. We cover all kinds of emotional learning in almost every lesson, no question about it. However I am still in charge in my class and have the final say on things, the pupils are absolutely not my equals. Nor should they be. They do not have the maturity or life experiences to always know the best way to proceed.
     
  8. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    Intersting post, minnie, and I agree with your basic argument.
    However, do you think "democracy" - which is simply a mechanism by which decisions are made - is the same as"equality"?
    Does "democracy" necessarily entail everyone being "equal" in the classroom? To me, it sounds as if you do have a democratic classroom to the extent that pupils have a distinct voice and - I presume - you act on what they say, even though you are in charge. An undemocratic classroom - and we all now they still exist - is one in which no account is taken of the pupils' voice at all.
    And in classrooms, could there be a difference between a democratic classroom and a classroom which behaves as if it is democratic? What I mean by that is that although the teacher is, of course, ultimately in charge, we develop children's democratic sensibilities by behaving as if we are operating a democracy.



     
  9. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    You could well be correct. I definitely don't always act on what they say as in do as they would like, but generally (though not always on a bad day) tell them why not.

    Sort of a democracy in that they are the electorate and I am the Prime Minister, except they didn't vote for me!
     
  10. Given the way that schools are accountable to central government then I don't think it is possible to run a school as a democracy.
     
  11. Random175

    Random175 New commenter

    Perhaps some of us don't think they were mistakes. I do want power in my classroom for the sake of it. I want children to learn and feel safe. By that token I have to be in charge. BTW I do not shout in children's faces ever.
     
  12. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    That may be so. However, we are talking about democratic classrooms.

     
  13. Doesn't this imply that classrooms are distinct entities from the schools they are in and the government that dictates policy to the school?
     
  14. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    No. It implies that teachers have, within their classrooms, the power to set the tone, establish an ethos and effect change because they are highly trained professionals. For the good teacher, I believe, a classroom that runs as far as possible on democratic principles and an undemocratic educational system are not mutually exclusive.

     
  15. This doesn't sound particularly democratic. Teachers would have to abdicate their power in favour of a democracy.
    I don't see it. The students and for that matter the teacher get hardly any say in the curriculum that is on offer. If the way the classroom was run is democratic then this could have terrible consequences? What if the majority vote for a system that means the curriculum cannot be taught properly?

     
  16. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    What a surprise.

     
  17. YesMrBronson

    YesMrBronson New commenter

    Then goes on to debate the concept in the very next paragraph:
    Brilliant.

     
  18. Has anyone mentioned 'Lord of the Flies' on this thread yet?
    And there is the possibility that one tends to treat others as one is treated: thus, if teachers aren't treated 'democratically' by their management, employers, government, can they really be expected to be so saintly as to be democratic with their students?
     
  19. RaymondSoltysek

    RaymondSoltysek New commenter

    Sorry, but I have never treated children like **** just because my employer treated me like ****. Do you, vehar?
    I don't think operating as democratic a classroom as possible is "saintly"; far from being altruistic, I think the response you get from the pupils only makes our lives easier. Therefore, it's actually self-serving, since it creates a better working environment for us.

     
  20. This doesn't further the debate Raymond it just makes it look like you've nothing left to say.
     

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