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                           CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT

        Relationships, Efficiency, Communication

                      January 2017 Blog

                    Edward DeRoche

         National data show that one in five new teachers will leave the classroom within five years; in urban districts, that number jumps to nearly 50%. 

 Last semester CERC co-sponsored a monthly seminar with the Department of Learning and Teaching faculty that we called “Teacher-Teaching Connections.” The series was offered to all students in the teacher education program, those doing student teaching, cooperating teachers, and staff members.

About seventy people attended each of the three programs .

The 2-hour program included a short reception, a half-hour presentation by the CERC staff, and a one-hour presentation offered by a veteran teacher in the public schools.

Listening carefully to the students’ questions, it was clear to me that many, if not most, were concerned about the many aspects of classroom management.

So, this month’s blog is for you—training to be a teacher, doing student teaching, entering the second half of your first year as a teacher, and those of you in your early years of teaching looking for practical, helpful, relevant classroom management tips.

Classroom Management: The Intervention Two-Step

All of us have had major classroom disruptions that try our patience and push our limits….. Couple these feelings with the possibility of taking the disruption personally, and we have a recipe for disaster. It’s important that we divide our response into two parts: (1) Immediate stabilization and (2) Intervention to resolve these issues.   …Minor inappropriate behavior does not require the two-step, but  when it is required, let’s see how to do it:

  • Understand that stabilizing is not excusing, letting the student get away with anything or ignoring. It is deferring the actual  intervention to a more favorable time.
  • Show the student that you’re willing to hear his or her side of the story.
  • Guess the motive for the misbehavior, and acknowledge it without agreeing to the student’s choice of a solution.
  • Deflect attempts to argue.
  • Use humor.

                                                       Dr. Richard Curwin’s Blog, February 4, 2014


Three Things New Teachers Need To Know About Classroom Management

  1. Teach Time-Saving Routines and Procedure Veteran teachers spend the first two weeks of the year  teaching routines and procedures, so the rest of the year runs   They teach routines like any other lesson, with  modeling, guided practice,  and independent application.
  2. Balance Rules with Relationships …Some teachers struggled because they hadn’t balanced           clear rules with showing they cared for students.. I helped them realize they could hold students accountable for doing      work, but also reach out to them when they were having a  bad day. When they gave a kid a consequence, I made sure they greeted them the next day with a smile and a “glad to have you back.”
  3. Plan to Maximize Student Thinking Time Double Plan: Make a lesson plan in two columns — one for what you would do and one for what the students would do.  Substitute the time you spend explaining what a text means, with them reading it and debating the meaning. Don’t “turn     it over” to students without making clear expectations for voice level, who they are working with, and the assignment.Behavior actually improved because they were no longer expected to sit passively, they were actively learning.                     Ryan McCarty, October, 2, 2014,


5 -Keys to Creating Independent Learners         

1. MotivationOne’s motivation to attempt a task is based on  a calculation of meaning, relevance, and perceived chance for success.                                                                                                                    

2. EngagementA school culture focused on engagement will  attempt to change student behavior by designing learning experiences that are better attuned to students’ need to engage in             meaningful work and solve problems that are relevant to their lives. .

3. Self-EfficacyA school culture that values self-efficacy will teach students that patience, persistence, and strategy are more important than innate intelligence.

4. Ownership – … A culture that values ownership will provide  students with choices about what they will learn, give students the  opportunity to determine evidence of their learning, and take the       time to teach students how to accurately assess—and revise—their own work.

5. IndependenceThe journey from dependence to independence  requires students to be the active agents in curriculum, instruction, and assessment.                                                                                                                  Tony Frontier is a member of the ASCD Professional Learning         Services and coauthor of Five Levers to Improve Learning: How   to Prioritize for Powerful Results in Your School (ASCD, 2014).

The Dos and Don’ts of Classroom Management: Your 25 Best Tips                   

“I am a soon to be new teacher and really appreciated this collection  of do’s and don’ts of classroom management. For me classroom  management does not intimidate me as it does for most new             teachers. I have been an after-school counselor for 6 years so have  learned some of these techniques along the way. I believe that there is one big thing to make sure you are able to manage your class and   that is creating that relationship with your students.”                                                                                                               —– A teacher from Texas                         management-your-25-best-tips?

 NOTE: CERC offers two ONLINE ONLY elective courses for undergraduate and graduate students:

Spring 2017: Educ 354/554 Character-based Classroom   Management: Principles, Practices, and Policies (3)

Summer 2017:Educ 379/579 Social-Emotional Learning & Teaching: Home, School, Work (3) — Monday , June 5   through Friday, August 25







December 2016

December 2016 Blog

By Edward DeRoche


Through much effort and careful planning, I was able to avoid participation in “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday.”

Using a specially designed GPS system, I tried to track another meaning for December—a virtues search –one that might help frame what this month should be about for all of us –parents, kids, and teachers== now and for the New Year.


Kindness is not an inherited trait; it is a learned behavior. —Katie Couric

An article in Scientific American (February 26, 2009) titled “Forget Survival of the Fittest: It Is Kindness That Counts,” features an interview with Dacher Keltner author of Born to be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life. Keltner noted that humans have remarkable tendencies toward kindness, play, generosity, reverence, and self-sacrifice.

The interviewer asked Keltner about “take aways “ from his study. His science-based conclusion was that emotions are “the core of our capacities for virtue like “cooperation” love and tenderness,” and that emotion that bring out the “good in others and in one’s self can readily be cultivated” (taught and learned, observed and practiced, modeled and mentored).

Here is a video by San Diego’s Superintendent, Cindy Marten, addressing teachers (also useful for parents) on the topic of “Why Kindness Matters.”

The Superintendent’s talk addresses the WHY question.

In the link below, two elementary school teachers (Pinger and Flook) discuss the HOW question by sharing their lessons from a “kindness curriculum” for young students (K-3).

The research suggests that “acts of kindness” may help increase and strengthen student relationships, social engagement, and broaden their social networks.


Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” – Melody Beattie, Author

Robert Emmons, a professor of psychology and author of the book THANKS! How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier, states that gratitude is the “queen of the virtues.”

Emmons defines gratitude “as affirming a benefit and giving credit to others for that benefit. In other words, gratitude, when properly understood, leads to an active appreciation of others.”

Several studies demonstrate relationships between gratitude and physical health. Why? Say the researchers, because of the “positive emotions that it fosters, the influence it has on relationships, and at the heart of joy.”

The Greater Good Science Center at the University of California ( offers several video presentations on the this topic including “making gratitude viral,” “cultivating gratitude in the workplace,“ “how can we cultivate gratitude in schools,” and “how parents can foster gratitude in kids.”


Empathy is at the heart of what it means to be human. It’s a foundation for acting ethically, for good relationships of many kinds, for loving well, and for professional success. And it’s key to preventing bullying and many other forms of cruelty. R. Weissbourd & S. Jones

The first the first stage of becoming empathetic is “cognitive empathy,” or the act of knowing how another person feels. The second is “emotional empathy,” or the capacity to physically feel the emotions of another. As with cognitive empathy, however, emotional empathy can have troublesome consequences if applied in isolation. Third is “compassionate empathy”, which is what occurs when we combine the previous two in the name of acting upon what we think and feel. (Sam Chaltain, “The Empathy Formula,” Huffington Post, 12-18-2012)

Cultural historian and author of Wonderbox: Curious Histories of How to Live, Roman Krznaric describes how the art of empathy can not only enrich one’s own life but also help to create social change. See the six habits of empathetic people at:

Also view this 3-minute video by Dr. Susan Stillman describing what empathy is about.                                                                  


Civility costs nothing, and buys everything. – Mary Wortley Montagu

One of the best resources I found “shopping around”, is Marilyn Price-Mitchell’s “Civility 101” — respect, restraint, decency, empathy. She answers questions like: What is civility? Is it declining? What is the relationship between incivility and violence and bullying? What are 15 ways to foster respectful behavior? She is a developmental psychologist, she writes about positive youth development, K-12 education, and family-school-community partnerships. Website // @DrPriceMitchell // Facebook

Speak Kindly: A Video about Civility and Respecting Others – YouTube Oct 13, 2009 Class Project for Communication Civilities and Ethics about the dangers of not speaking kindly.


Faith –it makes things possible, not easy.