Teach English in Yuqiao Jiedao - Beijing

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Classroom ManagementThe classroom should be a wonderful world of learning and opportunity for all students. Teachers must inspire confidence and encourage students to do their best. However, teachers must be flexible in their roles. Often they will have to strike a delicate balance between being firm and giving students space for independent study. Understanding how to strike this balance is a major factor in classroom management. According to ITTT (2011), classroom management is ?the skill of organizing and managing the class, having a friendly, relaxed manner, and maintaining discipline? (p. 1). According to Eslami and Fatahi (2008), classroom organization is positively correlated with the teacher?s self-efficacy. Teachers with strong efficacy take more risk and set higher standards for themselves and their students. As a result, students exhibit higher achievement (Larson, 2007; Akbari and Allvar, 2010). The following will be a discussion of what I deem to be the most interesting aspects of classroom management. Physical Presence in the Classroom A teacher?s physical presence in the classroom plays a crucial role in one?s ability to manage a class successfully. A teacher must be careful to avoid standing or sitting in one position for long periods of time. Moving around the classroom allows the teacher to maintain student interest and focus in on students who need help (ITTT, 2011; Martin and Darnley, 2004). Eye contact is a powerful tool for both the teacher and the learner. According to Hunt and Touzel (2009), ?If teachers desire that their students be involved in the learning process, attention to [eye contact] is important; as the eyes influence the quality of communication? (p. 84). Eye contact ensures that students understand what is going on in the classroom and encourages involvement. A teacher?s voice is also an important component of classroom management. The voice has an impact on the listener. Also, students will be disruptive if they cannot process what you are saying (Martin and Darnley, 2004). A teacher?s tone of voice can make the lesson exciting or boring, so a teacher must use her voice wisely. Grouping students Grouping students in various ways can enhance the learning process. students can work alone, be grouped in pairs, or even work with the entire class. Although this method restricts peer interaction, allowing students to work alone gives them a sense of independence and gives the teacher the opportunity to respond to individual needs. Pair work promotes the utmost participation from both students. In small groups, all students are involved in thinking and doing (Tibbitts, 2011). When class is grouped as a whole, students are able to interact with anyone in the class, and that creates a sense of belonging. Classroom Arrangement Teachers have several options when it comes to the seating arrangements for her students. The way the classroom is set up can impact student learning. The following will be an examination of popular TEFL seating arrangements. Orderly rows, or traditional seating, enable the teacher to have a clear view of and maintain eye contact with all students; this makes managing the classroom much easier. However, this layout inhibits pair and group work, as students cannot easily communicate with one another (Emmer, 2001). Another method used in TEFL classrooms is known as circles and horseshoes. The teacher and the board are at the open end of the arrangement. Often, students are more focused with this method. It is also more conducive for pair work, making the classroom more intimate (ITTT, 2011). According to Poulou (2005), teams with one strong and one weak student make for a homogenous learning environment. When students are seated in small groups at separate tables, the classroom becomes more informal. The teacher is able to easily work with one group at a time, and group work is more feasible with this method. However, students may feel separate from the class as a unit, and behavior problems may arise (ITTT, 2011). Establishing Rapport Building rapport with students is critical component of creating a successful classroom. According to Buskist and Saville (2001), rapport facilitates student motivation for learning and enables them to enjoy the class. Moreover, it enhances students receptivity to what is being taught. To build rapport a teacher should be clear, personable, and positive. Conclusion Understanding classroom management will not only allow teachers to do their best work but enable students to learn at their highest level. I would urge all teachers to get their classrooms in order and many typical classroom problems will begin to correct themselves. Resources Akbari, R. & Allvar, N.K. (2010). L2 Teacher Characteristics as predictors of students? Academic Achievement. Tarbiat Modares University. Buskist, W. & Saville, B.K.(2001). Creating Positive Emotional Contexts for Enhancing Teaching and Learning. APS Observer, pp. 12-12, 19. Emmer, E.T. (2001). Classroom management: A Critical Part of Educational Psychology, with implication for Teacher Education. Educational Psychologist 2001, Vol. 36 No. 2, Pages 103-112. Eslami, Z. & Fatahi, A. (2008). Teachers? Sense of Self-Efficacy, English Proficiency and Instructional Strategies: A Study of Nonnative EFL Teachers in iran. Texas A&M University. Hunt, G. & Touzel, T.J. (2009). Effective Teaching: Preparation and Implementation. Charles C. Thomas Publisher. ITTT (2011). Unit 5: Classroom Management ? Introduction. Larson, D. (2007). Self-awareness about teaching style: Development of a tool. Proceedings of the 2007 American Society for Engineering Education Pacific Southwest Annual Conference. Martin, S. & Darnley, L. (2004). The Teaching Voice second edition, Whurr Publishers. Poulou, M. (2005). Educational Psychology within Teacher Education. Teachers and Teaching Theory and Practice, vol. 11:6, page 555. Tibbitts, F. (2011). Working in Pairs and Small Groups. Human Rights Education Associates.