Today, we’re going to look at a different viewpoint: the teacher’s. You may find tips online, such as at squidoo.com, too! I have been working with children between the ages of three months and six years old for about four years now. From working with children myself, to observing teacher’s classrooms, it is apparent to me that teachers must keep reminding themselves of their conduct. Here are several tips I’ve compiled over the years and have helped me teach young children patiently and effectively.
Tip One: Whispering Works
With this age group, “story time” is generally loved. As much as they love being read to and sitting on the alphabet carpets, sometimes they are known to get antsy and to start talking to one another. There are two methods that I use to make sure the kids are listening and are quiet for their peers around them. And no, they do not involve a rainstick.
Catch the Bubble
Before you start reading to the kids, puff out your cheeks and teach them to catch a bubble. This simulates having a full mouth, and the children won’t speak while their cheeks are puffed. Of course, this is only to grab their attention and to initiate the reading time, so, more often than not, you will have to resort to whispering.
If your students are growing bored, starting to talk to each other, and goofing off, continue reading but in a very quiet fashion. Once they realize that you have “stopped reading,” they will look up at you and then realize that they need to listen. You may then transition into a normal pitch and volume.
Tip Two: It Isn’t Your Fault
The title of the tip is not referring to what to tell the children when they accidentally hurt someone and they, themselves, are upset about it. No, this is for the teachers. Often, if you are having a bad day at work and you are completely stressed out, it is easy to question yourself with, “What am I doing wrong? Why aren’t these kids behaving as I wish for them to?” Although it is good to introspect and try different methods of teaching to gain proficiency, you must remember that kids are kids. With that being said, kids can also be cruel. They may not mean to be, but they, along with some adults, have no filter. If the kids are just not understanding the material, you may want to step back and evaluate your teaching style as well as their learning styles. In other situations, the students may have learning disorders, such as ADHD. I, myself, have never dealt with students with learning disabilities, but here is a link to tips on how to handle those students!
When it comes down to it, take a step back, breathe, and understand that you are in control of your classroom – they are not. If you let your emotions get the best of you, it’s the children’s educations and learning that is at stake.
Tip Three: The Kids Need To Blow Off Steam Too
At many schools, it is up to the teacher to take their kids to their gym class. Many teachers will punish their students for misbehavior by not allowing them to go outside. However, if the kid is going to misbehave, he’s going to misbehave anywhere. Allowing them to run around will help to lower their energy levels in the classroom, as well as prepare them for nap time because they will tire. This, in turn, will help you, as you will have a little bit of time to “rest” if the students are all calm as well.