Carolina Biological OSE – April 2024


Forums / Pre-service Teachers / Classroom Management

Pre-service Teachers

Classroom Management

Author Post
Rhamey Floyd Rhamey Floyd 480 Points

Hey ya'll! My name is Rhamey Floyd, and I am currently in my junior year of college. I am majoring in Elementary Education, and I student teach semester after next. As I have taught my lessons in the past, I have struggled with effective classroom management. I have a hard time keeping students on task and keeping them from getting too loud when they are doing group work/fun activities. I want to be able to do activities and let my students have fun whenever I am in a classroom of my own, but I have a hard time even considering it because it feels like the students get out of control in the first five minutes. It is discoruaging when you work so hard on a lesson and want it to be enjoyable for them, but they get out of control and it seems like they get nothing out of it. I need some advice on what I should do or some things I should implement that would maybe help with these issues. I hope I am not alone in feeling this way. Thanks so much. 

Jc Miller Jc Miller 235 Points

Hey Rhamey. I am going through something similar regarding classroom managment. I just finished my first field experience where I taught three lessons and for all three I had students either not pay attention or be disruptive. I feel that it is harder as preservice teachers because the students know you are not the actual teacher and they feel that they can get away with more. I was discouraged after my second lesson especially because I felt that I did not do a good enough job monitoring them. But I just had to learn from it and move on. The advice my CT gave me was to establish a high standard in your classroom and enforce it. That goes for behavior as well as academics.  As far as having students working in groups, what I gathered was to group students by level and knowing them well enough to know who does not work well together. I feel that as we get more experience learn our students year in and year out, we will get better at managing the classroom. 

Liz Wickes Liz Wickes 975 Points

Hi Rhamey, I am also majoring in elementary education! I am a senior and beginning to student teach next semester! One of the biggest worries I have is also with classroom management. Since I am coming into another teacher's classroom, I feel like classroom management is weird because I don't want to overstep into my clinical educator's territory, but I also want to assert myself as a (student) teacher in the classrooom. One thing I've learned from my methods placement this past semester when doing group work is to have some sort of call back for the students to re-gather their attention. While completing group work, if it gets too loud, you can call students back together to remind them to keep their voices on the lower side when collaborating! I also wanted to touch on @JC Miller's post on this forum because I feel that it overlapped with the advice I was given as well! While at UD, I was able to take a class in classroom management, and my teacher always said to state your expectations before teaching—especially as a student teacher when you're visiting in a classroom that is not yours. While the students will see us preservice teachers as an authorativie figure, they know we are not their teacher. Thus, we don't teach the same as our clinical educators do, and that is okay! While we may keep the same expectations as our clinical educators do for the students, it will be helpful to reinforce those behavioral expectations before beginning to teach your lesson so that the children know what you expect from them while you're teaching. They can be reinforced verbally before the beginning of the lesson, or even better, keep them up while you're teaching so that students have access to it throughout the entire time!

Allison Thompson Allison Thompson 235 Points

Hi Rhamey! I completely understand what you are saying. I have also experienced a few times in the classroom when I was observing and teaching my lessons where some of the students had a hard time staying on task. It can be frustrating, but after watching some of my CTs I have learned a few different strategies to help with classroom management. One of them is having a strict set of classroom rules. When you establish rules from day one on how you expect your students to behave in the class it will help. My CT this semester made sure the students knew what was expected of them every time they walked into the classroom behavior and academic-wise. Another strategy I have seen is watching my CT build personal relationships with their students. This can help understand why some of your students aren't staying on task and what can be done to help them start staying on task. There are plenty of different classroom management strategies that can be used to help. As a new teacher, it is going to take a while to learn your classroom and what works best for you and your students. I hope you love teaching!  



Charity Cain Charity Cain 250 Points

Hey Rhamey! I also had the same question that you have. I am so use to being nice and thinking that kids will automatically respect my niceness. My mom who is an educator told me the best way to get your class under control is starting off strict. Have your rules and enforce them. After they learn the rules and realize there is no going around them, you will be able to loosen up on them a little. It is easier to loosen up after being strict than it is to be nice at first then  get them to abide by the rules. I also agree with Allison, as a new teacher, once we get in our own classrooms, we will be able to feel out how strict we need to be in the classroom and what works and what doesn't. After learning that, changing your assignments and activites to fit your classroom. What we think is fun may not work with the kind of class we have. You got this girl! I hope this helps!

Austin Wuerch Austin Wuerch 440 Points

I realize this is an older post but to throw in my two cents as someone who is just starting to get some teaching experience. I think a lot of new teachers fall into the trap of trying to be a 'cool teacher' and letting some behaviors go when they should probably be addressed. Some students will tend to test boundaries and if they notice you don't punish one behavior then they might push further in the future to see how much is allowed. Building rapport with students is definitely improtant, but as replies have mentioned you have to set rules and boundaries early and be consistent about enforcing them. As one of my mentors told me you need to think about what lines you have and how you want your classroom to run. There are behaviors that may not be expicitely against the rules buy they still need guidelines so students don't exploit them. For example, a student may get up repeatedly to sharpen a pencil or ask to to get a drink of water 5 times in a 40 minute class. These actions probably don't violate the rules but they can be disruptive to the class. For things like these you need to figure out what behaviors are acceptable and what are not and make sure the students are aware of them. Classroom management is hard and its something that I am still working on as well. Anyway, I hope everything goes well for I wish you the best!

Camille Brown Camille Brown 1801 Points


   I was recommended the book The First Days of School by Harry Wong and Rosemary Wong. Be confident and anticipate what could happen. When I was 18-20, there was no way I could have managed a classroom. Now, in my 30's and with kids of my own, I do not care to manage behavior. I believe in building a good rapport with students and things just seem to fall into place. Not everyday is good, so give yourself grace. Best wishes for your future as a teacher!



Post Reply

Forum content is subject to the same rules as NSTA List Serves. Rules and disclaimers