Trends in Discipline & Classroom Management

u160317961.jpgBy Paul Silli

What are your thoughts about discipline in the classroom? I use humor to keep my kids on task. If you can make them laugh, you will manage their behavior well. But using a sense of humor is not for everyone. So, how do you keep your kids behaved and learning? It seems today a teacher’s discipline skills have become almost more important then actual teaching. If you don’t have classroom management abilities, things are going to be difficult.  For my students I created what I call the “Five BE’s” of discipline. 

1) BE consistent with your class rules. This means DON’T BLUFF if you are going to discipline or reward your students. Stand by your word and establish credibility!  

2) BE firm, but fair. Firmness shows you care about your students; and often being fair deals with you treating “all” of your students equally. For example, if you have a deadline for a project – stick to it (unless a student is sick). Teaching kids the importance of a deadline is a life skill they need to learn.

3) BE flexible with your lessons. Students need to know if you create an activity, and it is not turning out the way you expected, you will change the work to meet their best interest. In other words, do what is necessary to make things work. Your students will respect your decisions which will lead to positive behavior.  ks142201.jpg

4) BE considerate to your students. Never argue or yell at them! Confrontations and class disruptions waste time and energy. Try to minimize outburst by reducing there importance. Students are very sensitive if you tease or argue with them –especially in front of their peers. If a class “issue” occurs, separate the child and address him or her on a one-to-one basis. This will create a respectful, calm atmosphere. 


5) BE organized with your class. Yes, organized! Often students (especially young ones) will take advantage of a situation if you are poorly prepared. It is just their nature. When students see that you have your act together — respect and good behavior will occur. Plan well, and stay on top of your game!


Visit “Top 10 Tips for Classroom Discipline & Management” for more info:



10 Responses to “Trends in Discipline & Classroom Management”

  1. Charlie Teacher Says:

    Great ideas and comments about discipline Paul. Thanks. I agree with you that teachers must have control to facilitate a positive, learning atmosphere in their classrooms.

  2. Carolyn Says:

    Thanks for sharing your ideas about discipline.

  3. bergerjacy1 Says:

    Great tips for discip;line. I also have the advantage of teaching science and almost always have my students doing inquiry based learning. fun and messy labs. When they are engaged in that way discipline issues are not much of an “issue”

  4. Paul (gatorball) Says:

    True. If you can get your learners attention, discipline will not be an issue. Thanks for the comments everyone. I do appreciate your thoughts. 🙂

  5. Francis Says:

    Great tips.

    I avoid being drawn into secondary behaviour. You know they type of thing:

    Stop talking, Mark.
    I wasn’t talking.
    Yes You were.
    No I wasn’t.
    I saw you talking.
    What about Tom? He was talking, too. You’r always picking on me.
    No I’m not.
    Yes, you are.


    We call this secondarty behaviour in the UK and there’s a simple way out.

    Stp talking, Mark.
    I wasn’t talking.
    You may be right. Now, please go back to your work.

    This way you avoid being drawn into an argument and can foics on re-directing the student into work. I find it very effective.

  6. Paul (gatorball) Says:

    Great re-direction and a good way to reduce the importance of the disruption by getting the child to get back to work. Nice strategy Francis… Anything you can do to re-direct the situation is awesome. I use humor or simply give the student an “eye” and defuse. Whatever works. 😉

  7. leotorio Says:

    I teach the same thing in the argument setting above–never argue with students–but I always have a consequence prepared.
    “Stop talking, Mark.”
    “I wasn’t talking.”
    “I don’t argue with students. Come 10 minutes after school to detention. I also don’t like students lying to me.”

    Otherwise, what’s to prevent Mark from doing this over and over?
    What about when you have 7 marks?

    Craig (Author of Classroom Discipline 101)

  8. Joey Hermosa Says:

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge. Its a big help to us who are new for the teaching profession.

  9. Carol Says:

    The Five Be’s are wonderful. I frequently read them especially before entering a teaching situation. However, I question the use of “there” in #4 – “reducing there importance”. Shouldn’t it be “their”?

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