Day 1: What Classroom Management Means To Me

Course: EDE 6506 – Creating & Differentiating the Learning Environments in Elementary Schools (Classroom Management)

Week 1 Recap: Prior to class we read “It Mattered that I Came” and “Morning Meeting”, two chapters out of The Morning Meeting Book (Kriete, 2002). In the reading, Kriete recalls the moment she realized the importance of student/teacher greetings and conversation. As a former student was dropping out of school, Kriete received a letter thanking her for the way she greeted the student every morning and left her feeling as if her presence in class was valued. “It touched and pained me that something which seemed so small to me…had meant so much to her,” (Kreite, 2002, pg. 1). Vowing to learn something out of the situation she would make a habit of greeting and welcoming students to class. We are then introduced to the concept of Morning Meeting. Per Kreite, approximately thirty minutes should be spent every morning (or at a specific time throughout the day) in which the whole classroom gathers together in a circle for a greeting and sharing time. Morning Meeting should include these four components to be most effectual: Greeting, sharing, group activity and news and announcements (Kriete, 2002, pg. 3). In the next chapter “Morning Meeting”, Kriete discusses the purposes of Morning Meeting, provides implementation ideas and troubleshooting advice.

After the Reading: I was definitely moved by the emotional appeals Kriete had made to encourage teachers to implement Morning Meeting into their routine. I visualized what my classroom might look like, how many students I might have and how I wanted to include Morning Meeting with my teaching style. The idea of a safe place where all students are given a platform to speak and engage with their peers and teacher(s) is important to me. When I decided to take the journey to become a teacher it was my goal to create a classroom that would not only encourage academic achievements but also to encourage personal growth and development. My experiences have led me to believe that it takes growth in multiple areas to develop the confidence needed to reach ones maximum abilities.  I feel strongly that the Morning Meeting concept will definitely be applied in my future classroom and will help to set the expectations of how we will operate as one unit.

In Class Activities: The following day I entered class and was soon directed to gather on the floor with my classmates. In my first Morning Meeting I was one of the students and my professor and TA were running the meeting. We went through the steps as suggested in “Morning Meeting,” (Kriete, 2002). I learned names, background information of my peers and professors, and received a brief snapshot of what I could expect throughout this course. We then returned to our seats and as I felt more relaxed and comfortable as we moved on to other tasks.

For the next assignment we were given five minutes to “free write” about what Classroom Management means to us. I described an environment in which students feel free to express themselves without the fear of judgement from others. I described how learning should feel comfortable even when challenging because outside factors such as a cultural, social and academic differences are not holding anyone back.  Following the free write we were then instructed to “mold” our concept of Classroom Management as we had written down. Then as a class we circled the room and checked out everyones interpretations leaving small notes to the left (see below). For the most part the message was clear to my peers.

Below, is what I came up with. A circle with the words “Safe Zone” inside. I chose as it reminded me of the setup of Morning Meeting and that during these meetings and throughout the day I wanted a place where learning would not be hinder by a lack of safe feelings.

 

My Play-Doh vision of classroom management

My Play-Doh vision of classroom management

 

Implementation Goals: The combination of reading about Morning Meeting, engaging in a Morning Meeting and creating my definition of classroom management has led me to new concepts that I look forward to embracing in the future. I imagine that many of my naive beliefs or visions I have of teaching will change throughout the MAT program and teaching experiences but my concept of classroom management will not. I will make sure that students feel safe, welcomed and feel supported enough to choose to learn. My goal is to learn creative ways of conducting and participating in Morning Meetings so that I can be a more effectual teacher.

 

Text covered:

Kriete, R. (2002). The morning meeting book. Thunder Falls, MA: Northeast Foundation, Inc.

 

 

Until next week,

Erica

 

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One thought on “Day 1: What Classroom Management Means To Me

  1. Erica,
    I love your layout, first of all! I think safety in a classroom plays a much larger role than most people think. You never know what kind of struggle everybody is going through and if they are not mentally ready to learn, it’s going to dramatically hinder their education. I love how you mentioned that you expect most of your naive beliefs will change throughout the program, that is SO true! We all have so many misconceptions or ideas that we believe are fool-proof, and we will all be knocked down a peg!

    Like

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