Thursday, January 12, 2006

Positive Discipline in the Classroom, Chapters 3 and 9

Reflection on Positive Discipline in the Classroom, by Jane Nelsen Lynn Lott, and Stephen Glenn; ISBN 1-55958-311-8; pages 29-40/95-107.

The concept proposed in this reading is the use of regularly held class meetings in which students take responsibility for finding solutions to problems encountered in the classroom.

There were quite a few negative opinions about this technique in our class. However, I have a more positive viewpoint about it. The potential downfall I can see regarding the use of this strategy is that it must be well thought-out and implemented with consistency. It must also be a strategy that feels natural for a teacher. I would imagine that if a teacher did not feel a natural buy-in for this type of group discussion, it would likely disintegrate into one of those things "we tried for a while."

One reason that I may have a more favorable opinion of this technique is that it probably lends itself more easily to a theatre class than to other types of subjects. The expectations in a math class are not generally as social in nature. However, this seems like a perfect fit for a social studies class which deals with governments, the rights and responsibilities of citizens, and related topics. In theatre classes, it is especially critical to develop a level of trust, cooperation, and openness.

I think that if this program were integrated into a thoroughly developed curriculum outline from the beginning of the school year, it would have a good chance of yielding positive results. of course, it is one more thing that a teacher would have to study, thoroughly learn, then implement. Just thinking about one more thing can justify a lot of negative comments.


Blogger training guru said...

I agree with your thoughts that the teacher must feel natural with using the meeting concept. I think the teacher must also be good at working with the students to get their buy in for this approach to really work. I also agree that it is one more type of skill set that a teacher might have to learn to make a success.

2:42 PM, January 16, 2006  

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