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Year 5/6: rules and routines

Discussion in 'Primary' started by academicallyblonde, Jul 23, 2015.

  1. academicallyblonde

    academicallyblonde New commenter

    I have become aware that my classroom management is weak compared to others in my school, and have set myself a target for the next school year to improve this. I think the main problem is not enough/ clear enough rules and routines for the classroom. I wonder if any other Year 5/6 teachers would mind sharing their rules and routines to give me a starting point?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. sunshineneeded

    sunshineneeded Star commenter

    With Year 5/6, I would definitely write the rules (prefer to call them class values) with the children. Talk first about why we have rules, then let them work in groups of four to brainstorm rules they think are important. Share these, grouping similar ones together. You can then discuss 'this group is all about looking after the classroom and resources'; 'these ones all refer to listening to each other, respecting other people's views'. From this, you will be able to write a maximum of five values which the children themselves have created. Having this ownership makes it much more personal and real for the kids - type them up, allow every child to sign below them and display the poster in the classroom. You can then draw attention to it if needed!
  3. michaelt1979

    michaelt1979 Occasional commenter

    And I'm completely the opposite.

    In my classroom I make the rules and they're simple, such as:

    1. Listen

    2. Follow instructions

    3. Treat people kindly

    4. Look after property

    By Year 5/6 they know what's what when it comes to behaviour; they don't need to brainstorm it. They just need absolute clarity about what the consequences of failing to abide by the rules are. Thereafter, focus on consistency.

    I also have no worries about spending time in the early days getting things right. If lining up is chaotic, then practise. If one or two children shout out too often, make sure you pick up on it every single time. If you are likely to need children to give out books each lesson then practise a routine for doing this several times in the early days.

    I have several key 'routines' including how to line up for assemblies, what I expect when children are listening, what to do on arrival in the morning, and again after lunch, my expectations for getting drinks, going to the toilets, etc. It hardly matters what the expectations are, just so long as they're clear to all.

    You also need to be completely on top of it in the early days - particularly trying to reinforce "correct" behaviours. For example, if a child isn't listening, point it out, and expect an apology and an explanation of how they're going to correct it. If they're rowdy in the corridors then expect them to do the same again as soon as possible after.

    In reality, half your challenge is in recognising that you need to tighten up on things: just by being aware of this, you'll doubtless find things are easier this year.

    Good luck with it all!

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