teachinglearning:Ta-da! This is a my new classroom management consequence ladder tracking chart that I’m going to implement this year for my 8th graders! I’m adapting to it because one big problem that I ran into in my classroom management last year was that my students would instantly shut down once they received a writing assignment as a consequence. This new method enables the student the power to correct their behavior and move out of the negative consequences and back into positive ones by the end of the class period; actually encouraging them to correct their behavior!
Now just 6 more to make and a ton a clothespins to buy!
Comments? Questions?uh I have so many extra clip boards that I should consider doing this
[snipped by GWALP]
Then, my dear, we live in a world of semantics. Writing is writing. Authority is authority. Whether the consequence is overtly related to the material or not, consequences are things that ought not be enjoyed for the sake of doing, but things that ought to lift up a person to a new emotion. Please, #education, enlighten this bad teacher with your ideas on the context. I’m truly all ears. All I ask is that you be civil and not hijack for the sake of stating a message. I want you to bring something to the table that I can learn from, not bash for it’s insensitiveness.
I didn’t see anyone calling you a bad teacher.
Nor did I see anyone call this insensitive, but in other terms, many of us call this misguided.
As others have said, writing as a form of punishment can instill a dislike of writing, which is the opposite of what we as teachers want. Someone else made the point that, “I don’t make students do math problems, so why make kids write?”
Shape-futures said she does believe in apology letters, but I don’t even believe in forcing those. I have *suggested* to students, “I think it would be good of you to write a letter of apology if you can find the the words to say.” I don’t make them do it. Only ONCE have I had a student NOT do it. I don’t feel you are really fostering a genuine thought process of regret or the act of asking for forgiveness.
Writing for punishment, or any punishment, often does not “lift a person up to new emotion.” It can often foster many negative feelings—the opposite of what you want if not administered properly, effectively, or with known consequences.
I like that you make consequences of actions very, very clear. You do put student ownership into play there—YOU ARE MAKING THEM THE AUTHORITY by doing this. You cannot say, “authority is authority” because students need to feel empowered in your class, not overpowered. And you are giving them clear choices here.
I wonder how it would work if “teachers choice” was actually “student choice” and they had to choose from various tasks or reprimands: loss of lunch with friends, loss of recess, clean boards, or maybe even include the writing as a CHOICE so it’s not the only ultimatum.
then, after the “student choice” you call home. I wonder if you should be calling home much sooner. You have it as the fourth strike, essentially.
We are a community who wants to help, and when #education sees something we feel strongly about, then we tend to react in a knee-jerk way.
But I was being brutally honest with you: As a hypothetical parent, I would be furious if you used writing as a punishment for my kid. You would hear from me. I would ask for my kid to have after school detention and help clean your room or something.
How would you deal with me, as a parent, if I said no to your form of punishment (regardless of what that punishment is)?
I love this idea! If the child thinks that writing is a punishment, he/she is probably not the best writer and could use some improvement anyhow. Don’t get in trouble, and you won’t have to write. Simple as that.
But they will have to write. They’ll have to write every day. They’ll have to write for almost every subject. They’ll have to write for tests, for assignments, for expression, for labs, for just about everything.
Students have to write. Writing is not a negative consequence that can be removed if they do well and avoid negative behaviors.
If a student has trouble with writing, forcing them to practice because they did something they shouldn’t have isn’t going to help them. It’s going to make them hate something that they likely already hate because they’re not good at it. If you lack confidence and skill in something and someone forces you to do it as a punishment and justifies it because you need practice, how would that make you feel? Would it help your confidence?
Thanks to many of you for your encouragement and suggestions, I hope this in some way is beneficial to you. Clearing the air to your comments, #education. First, I want to be clear with you all: Not everyone works at a school with as much privilege as you all might. Please have compassion for a person’s conditions and conditioning, especially when you are talking to educators, whose environments they work in sometimes are simply out of their own control. Understand this and do not place your knee-jerk reactions on someone’s neck because you disagree with one little thing that they might do, without even trying to understand the situation that created the monster in the first place.
@Shapefutures I do not imply that a student is good or bad at writing. It is a fair consequence and I do not judge their writing ability. If I were a student, I would not want to get a writing assignment because it’s a pain, just as much as I would not want to get a speeding ticket. I think your first statement says volumes: students will write everyday, for just about everything. Stop and come with me on this journey: If writing is inherent in a child’s experience at school, and schools are places of learning, then isn’t writing inherent in learning? Whether we, as teachers, force (we can argue the word force if you like, but, inside this education system is a serious power-struggle of student-teacher/adult relations, and the idea of “forcing” is the nature of the game whether it be intrinsic or extrinsic.) a child to write a math problem, or a biography on Martin Luther King Jr., or an apology, or a statement of what they did and how they could correct this behavior in the future, we are making them put pencil to paper when most of them would rather not be. Children want to learn, YES, but learning comes at a cost of doing things that are hard and in the case of schools, doing things that you feel resistent to.
@Girlwithalessonplan Thanks for your help. Writing in and for school can and I would argue does instill in students a discomfort in writing in most students, especially when that writing being judged. Please refer to my comments to Shapefutures concerning writing in school and the act of “learning” in our current form of education.
Punishment for the sake of punishment harbors negative emotions, yes. Justified and explained punishment for a clear behavior decision harbors negative emotions, yes. The simple act of a punishment harbors negative emotions, yes. The only way for teachers to truly lift a student or any one up, is by compassion and peaceful communication. In the chaos that is my school, I have yet to find even ground to lay foot to start real change. I’m trying to stay afloat and trying to be positive amidst the negativity. We work in the environments that we are given and can only do so much to change them. Unfortunately my school does not have a detention. Our halls are silent. Our lunch is silent. Students are routinely hit with a wooden paddle by their teachers and administrators for simply “talking back.” A teacher has a less than 10% chance of getting a hold of a parent, due to rampent disconnected cell phones. In other words, the “call home” will not be a hard consequence for the child when they realize I am not able to get a hold of them.
I very much appreciate you for teaching your children forgiveness. I am not that smart or clever to figure out a way that I can foster a genuine thought process of forgiveness to my students as they have not learned it in the church nor at home. I desperately try to model forgiveness in my classroom, but still I fear my students do not see it as forgiveness, but shear weakness. I’m trying and I need help here.
As a hypothetical parent you would, you’re saying, have your child “clean my room” or sit in silence “in detention” after school. Now, is this a good form of punishment in your eyes? If so, explain it further to me. Explain it to the janitor at your school, that their work is like punishment. Explain it to trash collectors, or anyone doing manual labor as their profession, that their work is hard and is like punishment, or at least a consequence of bad behavior. Maybe you would argue that they are janitors because that’s their calling and they didn’t do well in school? I’m not sure of your justification, so I want assume further, but could you please explain this to me, as a person, NOT as a hypothetical parent. I’m lost. Please explain.
@rabicle thanks for deciding not to use your foul language anymore, yes, children love candy and just the idea of candy motivates them to do well. I know this is instilling in them even more extrinsic motivators in their life, but please come walk in my shoes for an hour, without the language, please, before you bring your college-education to teach me about extrinsic and intrinsic motivation.
@takenbythesky am I not to believe, “Dear God,” before a statement is insinuating that edunewbie is placing the advocacy of their comment into a god’s hands, for which, it turns into a cry of “THIS PERSON IS CRAZY OVER HERE!”? Because surely if you can’t use your words to argue your point coherently, then pray to god (or write him a letter, perhaps?).
@lbschool Candy, unfortunately, brings with it in the hierarchy of the middle school child’s pecking order a speck of belonging.
@april2383 thanks for your question: All students will start on Good Behavior at the beginning of class. As the class progresses students will move up or down the chart depending on the behavior choices they have chosen to partake in. Some of these choices will be positive to the learning environment and will be rewarding by moving up the ladder, while others will be seen as hindering our learning environment which will move down the ladder to negative consequences. Students will be able to watch their progress throughout the class period and at the end of class I will record where each student left off, having them ready for parent calls and interactions.
Most categories are self-explanatory, except Teacher’s Choice and Writing Assignment. A Student-Teacher conference will be part of the “Teacher’s Choice” to the degree that I’ll have a hall conference with the student at my earliest convenience. Then, after we have talked about the issue at hand and resolved and decided on a clear choice for the student to follow, the student will return to the classroom to return to learning. If, however, the student remains to be a disruption to the class then the teacher will “choose” whatever the student and teacher agree upon in the hallway. That might be changing a seat, calling home, a writing assignment, losing privileges, etc. If the behavior coincides, and/or continues the be a disruption then that is when their clothespin will be moved down to Writing Assignment.
The Writing assignment has evolved tremendously over my teaching. It’s current form is a formal document where students will have to take it home to complete. The first step is explaining what they did by including the words “disrupting my learning”. The student will have to explain their actions of misbehavior (justify their actions). Then they will have to suggest ways that they could improve upon by not making these same choices again in class. These writing assignments will be signed by a parent or guardian and returned the next day. If they are not returned, the student will be given a referral.