Kristen Darling: Classroom Community Building
Intent of Project
The intent of this course is to help create a community within a classroom so that teachers become familiar with how to set up a classroom community and are aware of what social norms of being in a classroom setting would look like.
Topics that will be covered:
- What is a classroom community?
- The classroom norms and expectations.
- What are the expectations for students when directions are given?
Learners will be able to
- identify classroom norms and expectations
- identify and explain classroom procedures
- explain expectations for when directions are given
Needs Analysis for Classroom Community Building
Many students in several kindergarten classes are experiencing difficulty with behaviors in the classroom. After an informal conversation with two other kindergarten teachers, the need for how to build a classroom community was more apparent. The two other teachers expressed difficulty with their students following directions, staying on task and keep their hands to themselves. These are similar problems that I was noticing in my own kindergarten classroom. A mini-course on classroom community building is warranted to address any confusion or missing information for kindergarten teachers and their students. As kindergarten teachers, we know that "social and emotional development is an intentional and significant part of our curriculum" (Kane, 2016). Kindergarten is the first exposure to a classroom setting and expectations for many students and can be a challenging transition if there is not a strong community built from the first day. Kane (2016) writes about the importance of creating a classroom community and he states that "The key to teaching children social and emotional skills is creating a classroom culture built on community. Strong communities have members who have shared goals and experiences, who feel empowered to contribute, who trust in one another, and who feel understood and capable as individuals. These attributes enable teamwork, cooperation, a willingness to negotiate, and the ability to draw on one another’s skills."
In order to teach students the required academic material, teachers must have implemented a classroom community structure so that learning is capable of happening and these mini courses will help a teacher to develop a classroom community within their room.
What They Will Learn
Learners will learn the foundations of building a classroom community and expectations for their classroom. They will also learn about establishing classroom procedures and expectations for students when they give directions.
Learners will include educators, preservice educators, or professionals in the educational field who are interesting in learning more about establishing a classroom community with clear expectations and norms for their classroom. Instruction will be geared towards kindergarten teachers, although it can be adapted for other grade levels as needed.
Learners will be engaging in instruction solely online, allowing freedom for when they are able to complete the lessons based upon individual schedules. In order to participate in the mini course, learners will need access to the internet.
Exploring the problem and solution
In many classrooms, the teacher sets the expectations and rules before the students enter the room on the first day. This has been a standard for teachers for a long time, but research has shown that "your learners will respond better to rules they’ve had a hand in making" (Watanabe-Crockett, 2018). When teachers create the expectations and rules before the students are in the classroom, they are missing an important opportunity to invest the students in their classroom, their learning and the expectations. "Community is vital in creating a successful classroom, but it doesn’t just happen. A teacher needs to plan, prepare, and implement procedures and expectations (with the help of students), to consistently make creating a community of learners a priority" (Learners Edge, 2016).
This course will give teachers the tools and steps necessary to create a classroom community in their own classroom, where students and teachers build the expectations and norms together in order for as many students as possible to benefit from the learning that will take place.
The goal of this mini course is for kindergarten teachers to be able to create a classroom community within their own rooms where teachers and students alike understand clearly the expectations and norms of students behavior and the expectations for when the teacher gives directions.
- Learners will be able to describe the classroom norms and expectations with 80% accuracy.
- Learners will be able to describe what classroom procedures are with 80% accuracy.
- Learners will be able to describe and demonstrate what the expectations are when a teacher gives directions with 80% accuracy.
References and Resources
AITSL. (2016, April 17). Establishing classroom expectations. Retrieved December 4, 2018, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbH-y5Ouqck
Cox, J. (n.d.). Classroom Management: Procedures. Retrieved from http://www.teachhub.com/classroom-management-procedures
EngageNY. (2016, January 13). Teacher establishes routines, procedures, transitions, & expectations for student behavior - Ex 6. Retrieved December, 2018, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X617S0HHaEY
Finley, T. (2014, August 12). The Science Behind Classroom Norming. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/establishing-classroom-norms-todd-finley
Glasener, A. (2015, March 16). Following Directions PBIS. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dQMl7rMYoA
Hudson, H. (2017, August 07). 10 Classroom Procedures That Will Save Your Sanity. Retrieved December 8, 2018, from https://www.weareteachers.com/classroom-procedures-save-sanity/
Hughes, D. (2017). Classroom Norms: Setting Expectations with Students. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://study.com/academy/lesson/classroom-norms-setting-expectations-with-students.html
Kane, K. (2016, August 12). Back to School: Why Creating Classroom Community is So Important. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://www.naeyc.org/resources/blog/why-creating-classroom-community-so-important
Konen, J. (2017, November 14). Managing Classroom Procedures. Retrieved December, 2018, from https://www.teacher.org/daily/managing-classroom-procedures/
Learners Edge. (2016, September 16). 4 Ways to Create a Classroom Community. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://www.learnersedgeinc.com/blog/4-ways-to-create-a-classroom-community
Murray, B. (2002). 30 Classroom Procedures to Head Off Behavior Problems. Retrieved December 8, 2018, from https://www.scholastic.com/teachers/articles/teaching-content/30-classroom-procedures-head-behavior-problems/
ScholasticInc. (2018). Creating Classroom Routines and Procedures. Retrieved December 9, 2018, from http://teacher.scholastic.com/classroom_management_pictures/
Teacher, O. F. (2017, April 01). Classroom Management: Procedures and Routines. Retrieved December, 2018, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-n3ZncKAcU
University of Vermont. (2018). Classroom Norms. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://www.uvm.edu/~wfox/ClassNorms.html
W, C. (2015, June 11). Miss Nelson is Missing. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIyxMsqvpwA&list=PLmnhowj4rb_yUsei4-5hwS5M9WPVB9RXt&index=27
Watanabe-Crockett, L. (2018, January 23). How to Make Sure You're Creating Classroom Community. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://globaldigitalcitizen.org/creating-classroom-community