The last year has proved educational in a variety of ways. I've been learning on the go since we arrived, and now, as the summer approaches, is the time to start reflecting on the year.
My students are a frustrating bunch. We have had to deal with a lot of behaviour problems this year at my school, and a lot of that is due to where we live. The kids that attend our school are a privileged lot that have nannies and drivers. They don't even pack their own books into their bags. This reliance on others to do things for them has meant that our students often lack motivation and many of them have no respect for the classroom. Of course, it is not all students, and it isn't really their fault. They are a product of their environments. It is my job to try and give them a formative and positive environment to develop in.
Behaviour management is a difficult thing to master, and I am nowhere close to doing that. However, I did discover some things this year. Mainly, my students are interested in being good students but they have trouble knowing how to do that. The best tool at my disposal this year has been Class Dojo. This site turns behaviour management in a visual point-based system. The kids loved it. I had students actively engaged in trying to be good. It helped loads this year.
However, I want to use it in a slightly different way next year. This year the kids would earn positive and negative points based on their classroom behaviour, and we would reset the count each week. If they reached 10 positive points in a week they got to choose a reward. If the class achieved a 75% positive rating at the end of the week the whole class earned a reward (usually soccer).
Next year, I want to make the points continue from week to week. The students will be able to redeem points for rewards or privileges. As of right now I'm not sure that I can reset individual points using Class Dojo, but I'll figure something out (even if it means creating a hard copy point system modelled on Class Dojo).
As I've mentioned before, I have a lot of big plans for the next school year. I'll be blogging more about them soon in a series I've yet to title. Stay tuned.