What classroom management techniques do you use or are you most comfortable with?
A: I had a very interesting conversation with my cooperating teacher early in my student teaching experience. She gave me a piece of advice I’ve never forgotten and which I’ve used on numerous occasions. She said that teachers often make the mistake of using “stop” messages rather than “start” messages. For example, “Stop talking. We need to get started.” A better message is ‘Get out your math books and turn to page 44.” I learned that a “start” message establishes a productive, businesslike tone for a lesson. The focus is not on the negative behavior, but rather the importance of the lesson. When I began to practice that philosophy in my own classroom I saw some tremendous changes…very positive changes, I might add.
This is a great opportunity to share a story or personal anecdote that demonstrates how you put a philosophy or concept into practice. It would be equally important to share how that opportunity helped you become a better teacher.