Positive Discipline in the
One of the most effective classroom management techniques is the use of
positive discipline in the classroom rather than just punishment. If
your students have a reason to show motivation in the classroom they
will be more apt to stay on task and focus on learning.
How do You Create a
Positive Classroom Climate?
There are five total things you can do to implement positive discipline
in the classroom. If you do all of these things in conjunction with the
next, you will have a positive classroom climate you can be proud to
Positive Classroom Management Technique #1
The first thing is something you will hear me say
over and over again -
respect your students. For a child to give respect they must see it in
action. If every single one of your students feels that you have
respect for their ideas and contributions, you’re on your way to using
positive discipline in the classroom. If you are a “screamer” and just
haul off and yell every time someone is off task, you lose them all
My first year as a teacher I was talking to a student who was 13 and
much, much taller than me and I’m 5’8” so that’s pretty tall for a 7th
The conversation went like this:
Him: So Miz D, we having a quiz after lunch today on
Me: Yes Sir, we sure are.
Him: (shocked) Did you just call me sir?
Me: Yes Sir, I sure did. Why?
Him: Well I’m no sir.
Me: In my classroom you most certainly are.
Him: (thinks, smiles, nods) Cool. Yeah.
Funny enough I didn’t start off planning to call my students "sir" or
"m'am" it was just one of those things I did. You can bet I’ve never
stopped as every year at least one student will comment on it
reinforcing what I suspected - they are just little adults crying out
for "grown up treatment."
Positive Classroom Management Technique #2
The second most important thing to do in order to use positive
discipline in the classroom is to point out the on task and fantastic
behaviors instead of the negative, off task ones. For example, if I see
that Jeremy is reading quietly and focused on his individual reading
book I’ll say “thank you Jeremy for reading so quietly and with such
interest right now.” When the other students hear this praise, the
majority of them will scramble to “do the right thing” so they too can
be singled out for good behavior. Simple but effective. The more you
say “Matt, you should be reading right now!” the worse the behavior
will most likely get.
Positive Classroom Management Technique #3
The third most important positive discipline in the classroom technique
is nonverbal communication in the classroom. Instead of seeing someone
writing notes from across the classroom and calling out to them “put
that note away!” which only draws attention to the negative behavior,
initiate eye contact with that person and slightly shake your head and
hold up your book to show them what they should be doing.
Positive Classroom Management Technique #4
The fourth most important thing to do when implementing positive
discipline in the classroom is to get up and walk around! A good
teacher is a teacher always on the move. While you read, while you give
notes, while you answer questions, while you discuss - whatever the
task is, if you are constantly walking around the room it requires more
students to be on task more of the time. If they never know where
you’re going to be, they’ll most likely find it too risky to be off
Positive Classroom Management Technique #5
Finally, my secret to success for creating a positive classroom climate
is a reward point system. My first year as a new middle school teacher
I saw a variation of this and fell in love. After some tweaking to fit
my teaching style, I’ve stuck with it ever since.
- The whole class works on a point
- At the beginning of each day the class will start
off with 5 points on the board.
- Points are taken away when ANY student is off task
or causing a disruption in our learning experience.
- Points lost CANNOT be earned back in the same day.
- At the end of each class period we will mark down
the total points earned for that day on the track chart (located in an
easily visible place).
- When the class, as a whole, reaches the point goal
(50-90 depending on the challenge) we will have a reward (decided upon
by the class
Points are kept on the board and erased as they are lost. You have to
be careful not to take away all the points or too many points in the
beginning. They need motivation in the classroom and by allowing them
to earn a few points for good behavior right off the bat, they start to
take it more seriously. Be consistent. If a particular class has
trouble coming in after lunch and getting settled, emphasize the use of
the point system at that time. However you work it in your classroom,
be consistent. If they are unsure of how and why they lose points
the entire reward point system is ineffective.
For the times when positive discipline in the classroom
doesn't work, be sure you have classroom discipline plans in place for
the repeat offenders. Deal with them on an individual discipline basis
so as not to continually penalize the whole class.
from Positive Discipline in the Classroom to Homepage.