Classroom Management Resources      Shindler      School Climate      PLSI       Teaching   -    Workshops by JVS

 

8/21/08

Ilda Ruano

EDCI -590

 

Classroom Climate Plan

 

A. Action Research and Diagnosis

Problem Statement and Context

The goal of teaching writing is to create independent and self-motivated writers. When students write more often, they become better at writing. They acquire habits, skills, and strategies that enable them to learn more about the craft of writing. Yet they require the guidance and support of a more knowledgeable person who understands the writing process, the changes over time in writing development, and specific techniques and procedures for teaching writing.  More importantly, we need to teach students to be more confident in their writing and teach them strategies and skills to enable them to become independent writers.  Specifically, I would like to know how I could use Writer’s Workshop to help students’ become self-regulated writers?

 

Sub-Questions:

How can I use Writer’s Workshop to teach students the writing process?

How can I use Writer’s Workshop to motivate students to write?

How can I increase student engagement through the use of Writer’s Workshop?

How can I use writing checklists, peer-editing, revising groups, writing rubrics and author’s chair to help students become self-regulated writers?

 

Research Design

My action research study is designed to understand how struggling students can be helped to become successful self-regulated writers using Writer’s Workshop. Self-regulation refers to self-generated thoughts, feelings, and actions that individuals use to help themselves attain personal goals (Zimmerman, 2000). Self-regulatory strategies include setting goals, carefully choosing appropriate strategies when approaching a task, generating self-instructions on how to complete the task, managing time effectively, creating effective environmental settings, monitoring progress, evaluating one’s own performance, seeking help from appropriate sources when needed, and providing rewards or imposing consequences based upon performance (Zimmerman, 1998). Self-efficacy, or an individual’s personal judgment of his or her ability to reach a set goal, also plays a large role in the attainment of self-regulation (Bandura, 1986).  Moreover, Writer’s Workshop is an instructional approach that is effective in teaching students how to become independent writers.  The Writer’s Workshop instructional approach includes a positive interactive environment, mini-lessons, teacher modeling, peer editing, student/teacher conferencing and author’s chair.

 

I will study a fifth grade self-contained class of 27 students.  An entrance survey (see attached) will be given on the first day to determine student’s attitudes towards writing.  During the first week, students will draft a persuasive writing sample which will be evaluated using a persuasive writing rubric (see attached) by the researcher.  In the next 15 weeks, I will then keep track of student behavior through an On- and Off-Task behavior checklist (see attached).  I will also keep track of student self-regulation during Writer’s Workshop activities through the use of a persuasive writing process checklist (see attached) and written observations of student-teacher conferences.  In the 16th week of the study, an exit survey (see attached) will be given to students to determine student’s attitude towards writing at the end of the intervention and a second writing sample will be evaluated according to the same persuasive writing rubric.  During the 17th week, I will analyze the data I have collected.  The study will last for a total of 17 weeks.

 

Data Collection

            The problems of poor writing strategies and negative attitudes are going to be documented through teacher-created rubrics (see attached), student entrance and exit surveys (see attached), and behavior checklists (see attached).  Student self-regulation during writing activities will be monitored using a Persuasive Writing Checklist (see attached) and written observations of student-teacher conferences.

 

Materials

            The materials used to collect this data consist of an entrance and exit Student Survey, an Off-Task Student Behavior Checklist, an On-Task Student Behavior Checklist, and persuasive writing rubric: The first source of data will come from a Student Survey consisting of six qualitative questions that will assess students’ attitudes towards writing, (see attached); for example, “Some people are good at writing, and others are not?”  The second source of data will come from On- and Off-Task student Behavior Checklists.   The Off-Task Student Behavior Checklist consists of disruptive behaviors within the classroom: for example; talking out, being out of seat, throwing things, drawing, passing notes, etc…  The On-Task Student Behavior Checklist consists of positive behaviors within the classroom (see attached): for example; reading aloud, raising hands, making eye contact, participating in class discussions, etc... The third source of data collection will come from student writing samples where students’ writing skills are going to be evaluated using a persuasive writing rubric and Persuasive Writing Process Checklist, which I will use to observe students’ self-monitoring skills.  Finally, the fourth source of data will come from written observations taken during student-teacher conferences.

 

Data Analysis and Procedures:

The data will be collected in the following manner: I, the researcher, will distribute a written consent form to all 27 students for the parents to sign.  Once I receive the written consent forms, I will mail out a letter of confirmation stating the time, date and room number will the study will take place.  I will then distribute my survey to all students in my classroom at the very first day of the study.  Note: the same student survey will be used at the beginning of the study (entrance survey), and at the end of the study (exit survey). I will give each individual student approximately 10 minutes to complete all six questions of the survey. For a fifteen week period, I will also observe the targeted 27 students for a total of 30 minutes during Writer’s Workshop, where I will use my checklists to document problematic and positive behaviors exhibited by students in my classroom, as well as document student writing progress through the use of student writing samples and Persuasive Writing Checklists. At the end of the fifteen weeks, I will distribute an exit survey to all 27 students in my classroom.  I will give each individual student approximately 10 minutes to complete all six questions of the survey.  Collection of all data will last approximately 1 week to obtain and the study should be concluded in a total of 17 weeks.

 

Student Survey

The purpose of the student survey is to gather information about the problem of student engagement and how students feel about math.  I will distribute and collect student surveys in class to ensure 100% return rate.  These surveys will be distributed in the first and last week of the study.  The survey contains seven questions focused on students’ thoughts relative to engagement in class.  Student motivation will be measured with a 4-point Likert scale asking students whether they disagree (1), disagree somewhat (2), agree somewhat (3), or agree (4). 

The Student Survey will be administered in class to the 27 targeted students in my fifth grade class, in order to gain insight into their beliefs and attitudes toward writing activities. The student survey includes six qualitative questions all consisting of Likert scales. This survey was designed to measure students’ attitudes toward various statements; where students will record their opinions by indicating whether they strongly agree, agree, disagree, or strongly disagree.  I will then categorize the results of this survey into a positive (strongly agree and agree) and a negative (disagree and strongly disagree) reaction.

 

Student Behavior Checklists

The purpose of the Off-Task Behavior Checklist is to gather information about the nature and extent of the problem of student disengagement in my own classroom.  Specifically, I will use the checklist to document problematic behaviors exhibited by students in my classroom.  For ten weeks, I will observe the targeted 27 students for a total of 30 minutes each morning, making a tally mark for each observed instance of ten off-task behaviors.  These observations will be recorded in the regular classroom environment by me, the researcher.  The method of data collection will be a tally system, which will note how often these off-task behaviors occur. Lastly, I will complete one checklist per week.  

The Off-Task Behavior Checklist consists of ten categories to measure off-task behavior. Theses categories include: 1) talking out; 2) being out of seat; 3) throwing things; 4) putting head down or sleeping; 5) drawing or scribbling.  Many researchers have given general descriptions of on-task behaviors, however, it should be noted that teachers are the ones to ultimately decide what is considered off-task because behaviors that one teacher may consider off-task may not be considered off-task by a different teacher. Each teacher must decide individually what off-task behaviors occur in their classrooms. 

The On-Task Behavior Checklist (Appendix C) will be used to determine the level of on-task behavior exhibited by the same 27 targeted students.  Specifically, I will use the checklist to document positive behaviors exhibited by students in my classroom.  For ten weeks, I will observe the targeted 27 students for a total of 30 minutes each morning, making a tally mark for each observed instance of ten off-task behaviors.  These observations will be recorded in the regular classroom environment by my aid.  The method of data collection will be a tally system, which will note how often these off-task behaviors occur. Lastly, my aide will complete one checklist per week.  

The checklist consists of five categories to measure on-task behavior. Theses categories include: 1) reading aloud; 2) raising hands; 3) making eye contact; 4) participating in revising group discussions; 5) active participation.  Again, it should be noted that behaviors that one teacher may consider on-task may not be considered on-task by a different teacher, therefore, each teacher must decide individually what off-task behaviors are most significant to them.  The method of data collection will be a tally system, which will note how often these on-task behaviors occur.

 

Timeline

In this study, I will focus specifically on peer editing, revising groups and student/teacher conferencing. During the first week of September 2008, students will be given a survey to fill out regarding their attitude toward writing. After drafting a writing sample during the first week of September 2008, students are going to be evaluated using a persuasive writing rubric by the researcher. In the next 15 weeks (second week of September 2008 – first week of December 2008), I will then keep track of student behavior through an On- and Off-Task behavior checklist.  I will also keep track of student self-regulation during Writer’s Workshop activities through the use of a persuasive writing process checklist and written observations of student-teacher conferences.   Finally, during the second week of December 2008, an identical survey will be given to the students, and a second writing sample will be evaluated according to the same rubric.  In addition, student behavior during Writer’s Workshop will be monitored using On- and Off-Task Checklists. 

 

B. Goals and Vision Setting

Goals for Classroom Climate During Writer’s Workshop

This action research project will address the problem of inadequate student knowledge of writing strategies, lack of student engagement during writing activities and students’ negative attitudes toward the writing process. The targeted population will consist of fifth grade students in a low socio-economic community located in an urban city. The problems of poor writing strategies, lack of students engagement and negative attitudes are going to be documented through student behavior checklists, teacher-created rubrics, student surveys, and behavior checklists.  On the other hand, students’ self-regulating skills will be monitored through writing process checklists and the individual goals met by individual students. Specifically my goals are the following;

1)                          Guidelines, expectations will be addressed by the teacher during student-teacher conferences.

2)                          Goals will be set by the students during student-teacher conferences.

3)                          I help students become self-sufficient writers through the use of a self writing reflection, a peer-editing guide fostering self-editing skills, as well as the use of a revision prompts worksheet to be used in revising groups.

4)                          I will act as a facilitator during Writer’s Workshop activities with the implementation of peer editing, revising groups, writing handouts, writing folders, persuasive writing process checklists, author’s chair and student goal setting.

5)                          Will create a classroom environment that encourages student interaction and encourages goal-setting.

 

Mission Statement

During our writer’s workshop time, the classroom is bustling with activity as students work independently and with others to draft and refine short stories, essays, poems, and other pieces of writing. Students engage in brainstorming and other prewriting activities, complete first drafts, make revisions in order to refine ideas, and edit for conventional errors. I frequently use focused mini-lessons to develop key concepts and to address particular problems that students encounter as they write. I serve as a model by allowing students to see how I move through the writing process as I work on my own writing. I am often amazed by the progress that many students make when given the time and freedom to write.

 

C. Technical Management Plan

Cue Technique and 100% Attention Strategy

            In order, to make my transitions smoother and create a culture of listening, I will use a verbal attention cue.  Whenever I want 100% attention, I will say “Show me you are ready!” which will signal students to stop whatever they are doing to listen to my directions.  This phrase means that students will 1) refrain from talking, 2) make direct eye contact with me, 3) and drop whatever they have in their hands so they can cross their hands on top of the desk. I will behaviorally-condition my students to respond to my cue by first modeling examples of “not paying attention,” such as looking at the ceiling, looking inside my desk, tapping a pencil while someone is talking, playing with a toy while someone is talking, making noises with my mouth and lips, facing the opposite way from the person doing the talking, etc… I will then explain the reasoning behind the cue.  For example, I will explain to the class that “good listeners don’t talk while another person is talking because they will not be able to hear what that person is saying.”  Lastly, I will have students practice showing me they are ready, as well as come up with examples that do not show me they are ready.  I will also use consequences to help me reinforce cues, such as standing next to or stopping and waiting for that particular student or group of students.  If a student consistently (more than twice a day) fails to follow the attention cue, they will adhere to the consequence.

I will have all students pay attention during class activities by taking action anytime a student is not listening by stopping and waiting for 100% of attention.  If student(s) continue being inattentive, I will use clarifying statements to get their attention, such as “We are all listening to directions right now!”  Students who do not get the hints provided by clarifying statements and proximity will be given a final opportunity to pay attention.  I will let them know, “I really need you to pay attention right now because I am giving directions.  I want you to make a choice, you either pay attention right now or I can re-explain the directions to you during recess?”  If the student still chooses not to pay attention, I will let that student or group of students know that they have violated the Classroom Social Contract and that they need to accept responsibility for the choice they made and adhere to the consequences, which will be staying during recess so I could explain directions or re-teach the lesson.   

 

Directions, Transitions, Procedures

            I will help students become effective listeners by giving effective simple directions using a systematic procedure.  First, I want to make sure that students are listening and making eye contact with me before giving directions. Therefore, I will begin with my verbal cue to gain their attention.  I also want to set a purpose for listening so I will the children what to listen for. For example, “Listen while I give you directions for your writing assignment”, or “listen while I review three phonics rules with you.  Furthermore, I want to make directions clear and simple by giving one direction at a time. For example, instead of saying, “put away your math book and open your language arts book to page 15,” I will say, “put away your math book (pause); now take out your language arts book (pause). Turn to page 15.” Lastly, I will check for understanding by randomly selecting a student to re-explain the directions.  For example, I may ask a student, “what are we going to do first?” and then ask another student, “what are we going to do second?”  This not only creates a culture of listening, but also enhances student accountability.

From my experience as a teacher, it is difficult for students to understand the need to change activities. It is also difficult for students to manage their own behaviors for an appropriate transition from one activity to another. I first want to examine my daily schedule and analyze which transitions are particularly difficult, and then offer solutions.  When examining my daily schedule, I want to first determine the number of transitions in my daily schedule. I will then determine how many minutes are spent in each transition (begin timing at the end of one activity, and continue until a new activity begins).  I will also note which transition times are the most difficult for individual children; for groups; and for the entire class.  When transitioning to a new routine, I will demonstrate what the procedure looks like and will use visual aids to help students execute it properly.    Once students have learned the new procedure, I will have them practice it independently.  If students fail to follow the procedure, I will have them do it again.  On the hand, if students follow the procedure in a timely manner, I will use positive reinforcement to by saying something like, “You did an excellent job of lining-up quietly in the proper line order. And you did it all in less than a minute!” 

            Morning routines, such as collecting homework and taking roll can take a lot of time.  Therefore, I will let students know that they need to have their homework in their hands when entering the classroom. As soon as students walk into the classroom they will be given a morning starter activity.  Since I begin the school day by teaching math, I will have students keep a bag of numbered tiles (0-9) in their pencil boxes so they can complete a “Number Sense Tile Activity.”  This is a hands-on thinking activity that will keep students occupied while role is taken and homework is collected.  I will use color coded tray for the collection and distribution of materials.  I will have group monitors collect and distribute these materials at the beginning and the end of every lesson. For dismissals, I will have a poster that detailing dismissal procedures, such as putting away materials inside of desk, putting homework away in your backpack, cleaning your work area, putting up your seat, lining-up, etc...   Students will be given the last 10 minutes to prepare for dismissal, as opposed to scrambling to get out when the bell rings.  If students show they are ready, they will be able to leave on time.

 

Homework and Accountability

            Homework is important because it reinforces what students have learned in class and teaches them to be responsible.  With that said, there are effective ways to assign homework assignments.  First, I will not assign homework to teach new material.  Homework should reinforce what students have learned in class.  Homework will also be multileveled so that every child is challenged according to their learning ability.  In order to increase student accountability, I want students to complete all homework assignments on time.  Therefore, I will always save the last 10 minutes of each class to get homework started in class.  By doing this, I will answer any questions that students may have and will avoid excuses like, “I didn’t know we had homework,” or “I didn’t understand the homework teacher?”

 

Implementation Strategies

I want to take a democratic approach to classroom management.  My strategies for implementing a technical management plan will be modeling rules, enforcing rules consistently, giving clear simple directions, and conditioning students to respond immediately to verbal cues. Modeling classroom rules will involve demonstrating the specific behaviors and language patterns of directions, transitions, and procedures. I will act out the behaviors, showing what each looks and sounds like. Modeling rules, will involve demonstrating the specific behaviors and language patterns of an expectation in a way that grounds the rules in day-to-day experiences. As a teacher, I will act out the desired attention cues, transition periods, dismissal procedures, morning routines, behaviors, showing what each looks and sounds like during the first week of school and thereafter when needed.

 

D. Motivation, Expectations, Emotional Climate

Motivational Goals and Philosophy

As teacher, I can positively contribute to a student’s motivation. Therefore, if I want children to take responsibility for their learning, I must analyze my own teaching methods and approaches to motivation.  Having a positive approach to motivation will influence my student’s desire to learn and will help them succeed in school. To me, it is far more important for students to be intrinsically motivated.  Every student should have an internal desire to succeed academically, as well as in areas of behavior. I plan on intrinsically motivating students by giving them more control, evoking curiosity, involving fantasy, presenting challenges, and making lessons fun and relevant to the lives of students. While extrinsic motivation and rewards should never be the preferred method of achieving good classroom management, they cannot be entirely eliminated.  With that said, I do plan to use positive reinforcement and incentives with difficult students.

 

Strategies for Motivation

            Participating in class activities, setting goals, paying attention, and asking questions, all arise from the motivation students’ have.  One of the major keys to increase motivation is the active involvement of students in their own education. Students must be actively involved in class discussions, activities, group problem solving exercises, helping to decide what to do and the best way to do it, working in groups, or in some other way getting physically involved in the lesson. I believe that students should also be involved in helping the teacher manage the class.  With that said, I will have students participate in various activities such as passing out papers, taking roll, organizing the class library, collecting homework, holding up pictures, rearranging chairs, changing overhead transparencies and so forth.  By helping the teacher, students will see themselves as necessary, integral, and contributing parts of the learning process. Through participation like this, students' self esteem increases, this in turn, increases their motivation.  Having a positive approach to motivation will influence my students’ desire to learn and will help them succeed in school.

 

Satisfying Basic Needs (Love, Belonging, and Power)

I believe that students’ behavior is linked to their desire to avoid sadness and achieve happiness. Students feel satisfied when one or more of their basic needs are being met. Therefore, when children choose to misbehave, they are not doing so just to disobey us or drive us crazy, even if it feels like it! They are choosing their behavior to meet a need. In my opinion, the need to love and be loved, to belong and have friends, is almost as strong as the need to survive. When students feel unloved and alienated, they may experience sadness. And if this need is not met, it might take precedence over learning and school in general.  I have also noticed that students also have the need for power.  Personally, I tend to think of power in a negative sense, as power over other people. However, I have learned that when I give students strict orders and commands, I frustrate their need for power. When you give them choices, you satisfy their need for power and give them a feeling that they are responsible enough to have control over their own behavior. In addition, when you praise students for the things they do well, when you recognize their accomplishments, you are satisfying their need for power. On the other hand, when students feel powerless, they attempt to satisfy this need by exerting power over others by bullying, acting out in class or disobeying rules and thus showing they are more powerful than the person who set the rules. 

 

Emotional Climate Expectations

Teachers most often frustrate and alienate their students’ when they continually criticize or belittle them, saying things like: “You never can do anything right.” “I never had this problem with your sister.” “Why can't you behave like John?” “You are a real disappointment to me. These types of statements chip away at student’s self-worth, and in the end cause more problems.  What I want to do is pay every student a compliment at least once a day and see what kind of impact it has on the collective class.  I realize that teachers have a great influence on students’ learning, motivation, study habits, self-esteem, and also the way they cope with life, which is why I plan to help students overcome challenges like low self-esteem, drugs, and peer-pressure.  With this in mind, I want to help my students improve their learning potential, effort, and achievement, which in turn will improve their self-esteem and motivation. As teachers, we need to understand children’s needs, in order to be able to asses and instruct students effectively and fairly.  Overall, I want every student’s learning experience to be a positive one, so that every child will feel included and valued, and not feel alienated from the rest of the class.

           

Implementation Strategies

I want to increase motivation and establish a stable emotional climate by giving positive feedback, involving students in the learning process, having students set up rules and expectations, and creating a classroom environment that accommodates the needs of every student.  I do not want to focus on negative forms of attention, such as reprimanding and excessive prompting, because they may help maintain inappropriate behaviors. Therefore, I will avoid focusing on students’ inappropriate behavior and, instead, focus on desirable replacement behaviors.  Instead, I will give students immediate positive feedback and reinforcement that will help increase positive behaviors. Second, I plan to involve my students in the learning process by assigning class jobs, holding class and group discussions, asking open-ended questions, assigning creative writing assignments, encouraging classroom participation, providing positive reinforcement, and using cooperative learning.  Not only should students be actively involved in their education, but they should be involved in setting up rules and expectations in the classroom, where both the teacher and the students alike, agree upon a standard set of rules and expectations that apply to everyone in the classroom. If students are involved in the decision-making process, they will be much less likely to misbehave..  Lastly, I want to create a classroom environment that accommodates the needs of every student, in particular the need for power, love, and belonging.  Therefore, I want to offer a variety of learning options that students can choose from, such as, book reports, essays, oral presentations, reflective journals, poetry, role playing, collage, drawing, computer simulation, creative writing, musical application, and traditional tests. My belief is that if students feel they have options than they will not need to fight for control/power.  Love and belonging will be established by allowing open communication within the class, and will give students several opportunities to get to know each other on a personal level.  I will treat all my students with respect and fairness. In return, students will learn to respond to school in a positive manner.

 

E. Whole Class Level Goals and Strategies

Social Bonds, Class Coherence

It is important for students to be aware of what is expected from them, as well as what they should expect from one another because only then are they given a true opportunity to succeed I school and society as a whole.  I plan to set a few clear attainable expectations for my students.  My expectations will be designed to create a “community” like environment that facilitates cooperative learning. I also plan to involve my students in establishing classroom boundaries. However, there will be four expectations that will not be negotiated upon, which include the following: 

·         Students are expected to treat others the way they would like to be treated.

·         Students are expected to respect one another.

·         Students are expected to work to their full potential.

·         Students are expected to participate and cooperate in classroom activities.

Allowing students to collaborate in setting up rules and expectations helps them to create a feeling of responsibility for their classroom, which in turn makes students, feel as though they are an essential part of the classroom.  Although, I plan keep students involved in setting up rules and expectations, I will inform them from the beginning of class, that any form of disrespect, such as name calling, ridicule, and sarcasm will not be tolerated.  Mutual respect and the Golden Rule will always be enforced and will not be negotiated upon.  With the help of my students I will develop a Student-Teacher Classroom Social Contract that will describe what is required of each student, codes of behavior, and student expectations. By promoting students to actively develop the contract, sign it, and have their parents sign the contract, both parents and students will be explicitly aware of the classroom rules and expectations.  Once rules and policies are established they will be placed on a bulletin board so that they remain visible to the entire class.  Students will also keep their copy of the However, I will explain to students that the Classroom Social Contract is more of a verbal agreement; therefore, if they do not commit to the contract then they are not honoring it.

 

Consequences 

            Students will not only be involved in developing rules and expectations but they will also be involved in developing consequences for Classroom Social Contract violations.  If students are involved in developing consequences, they will be more likely to adhere to consequences and will understand the reasoning behind them.  Of course, this will require that I carefully monitor and guide the entire process because younger children can come-up with quite punitive consequences.  With the help of my students, I will develop a set of consequences of increasing severity to allow for the full range of behaviors that may occur.  For example, if our Classroom Social Contract states that we should cooperate during group activities, then the consequence for not doing so will be losing group points. 

 

Dealing with Difficult Students and Extreme Cases

The curriculum for students with behavior problems will include both academic and behavioral skills. I will structure the learning environment so that these skills can be addressed and practiced. Specifically, I will incorporate a great deal of cooperative learning and social skills instruction into my daily lessons. Cooperative learning will provide all students the opportunity to work well with others, take turns, share ideas, follow directions, gain understanding of various ways of thinking, and observe appropriate social behavior. In addition, research shows that students who work in cooperative groups increase their acceptance of students with exceptionalities, develop positive attitudes with others who differ in achievement, and improve their social skills (Eggen & Kauchak, 2000). I will use social skills instruction to teach students with behavior disorders specific behavior based on their individual needs.  Social skills instruction involves individual planning, direct instruction, and teacher mediation (Scott & Nelson, 1998). Trough direct instruction, I will identify the specific social skills that need improvement and through teacher-mediated strategies, I will reinforce appropriate responses. In addition, I will use instructional strategies that involve self-management, problem solving, and metacognitive skills to focus on teaching students the skills necessary for taking responsibility in making decisions regarding their own behavior and education.        

I will take extra time to structure my class in order to prevent inappropriate disruptive behaviors from students with behavior disorders.  Students, who are likely to act out, will be seated near me, where I can observe them closely and where they are unlikely to hurt others or themselves. In addition to keeping a weekly checklist for monitoring student behavior, I will teach students self-management skills that will help them identify and change inappropriate behavior.  Instruction in self-management skills involves teaching children to pay attention to, monitor, and record their own performance (Hunt & Marshall, 2005).  In this approach, students themselves record both appropriate and inappropriate behaviors, and practice giving alternative responses by using role-play or checklists.  With my help, students will learn alternative behaviors, such as taking time-outs or counting to ten, to take the place of inappropriate ones.

 

Creating Community and Responsibility

The classroom climate will be that of a “warm nurturing community,” which provides students with the opportunity to explore various ways of learning. In this climate students will feel safe, welcomed, and appreciated. In order to create a sense of community within the classroom, I plan to set aside a portion of the class to display family pictures and class work from my students. This sense of community will be further enhanced by allowing open communication in the classroom and providing several opportunities for cooperative learning. Students should always feel as though it is “their” classroom, where their participation and cooperation are essential.  The classroom environment will also celebrate diversity by displaying materials and objects from various cultures and diverse groups, so that every student will feel included and valued. Overall, I want to create a stimulating learning environment, where students are allowed to make mistakes, explore, participate, and express their views. Because students will take an active role in their learning, developing rules, and helping me run the class, they will feel a sense of responsibility and ownership in the classroom. 

 

Implementation Strategies

First, I want to clarify that I want to try to avoid using punishment as much as possible because students may become emotional in anticipation of punishment and/or
aggressive in response to it.  They may also become accustomed to the punishment, which will make it totally ineffective. Furthermore, punishing inappropriate behavior does not teach students appropriate behavior and may in fact show students how to be punishing, not how to behave appropriately.  Instead, I plan to use consequences.  With the help of my students, I will set up
rules and consequences, which will be placed on a bulletin board so that they remain visible to the entire class. During the first few weeks of school, I will read and discuss the rules, role-play, and explain the positive and negative consequences associated with the rules. Once my consequences are established, I plan to respond immediately! Immediate response to behavior (whether reinforcement or punishment) will promote the student’s relating of the behavior to the consequence. I also plan to respond consistently. I want to respond consistently throughout the school day (e.g. even if contract violation occurs 5 minutes before dismissal), across settings (e.g. fieldtrips, recess, lunch, etc…), and in various situations. This is the most difficult thing to do, yet the most crucial component of intervention. Failure to implement an intervention consistently will not only prohibit the success of my Classroom Social Contract, it may make the behavior problems even worse!  Lastly, I believe in a student-centered approach to learning and plan to modify my expectations accordingly.  My role as teacher should be making the learning process easier for students. Therefore, students will ultimately be responsible for their own learning and behavior. I feel that students should help guide their own learning, as opposed to being told exactly what to do.  Overall, I will be consistent with rules, expectations, routines, and consequences for misbehavior.

 

 

 

 

 

References

 

 

Bandura, A. (1986). Social foundations of thought and action: A social cognitive theory. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Eggen, P., & Kauchak, D. (2000). Educational Psychology: Windows on Classrooms, Sixth Edition. New Jersey: Merrill Prentice Hall, page 577.

Scott, M., & Nelson, M. (1998). Confusion and failure in facilitating generalized social responding in the school setting: Sometimes 2 + 2 = 5. Behavioral Disorders, 23, pages 264-275.

Zimmerman, B.J. (1998). Academic studying and the development of personal skill: A self-regulatory perspective. Educational Psychologist, 33, 73–86.

 

Zimmerman, B.J. (2000). Attaining self-regulation: A social cognitive perspective. In M. Boekaerts, P.R. Pintrich, & M.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Entrance/Exit Survey: Quantitative Questions

 

Please circle the letter next to the answer that best applies to you.

 

1. I consider writing as an outlet for expressing my emotions?

 

            a) Strongly disagree    b) Disagree      c) Agree          d) Strongly Agree

 

2. I know and understand all the writing stages?

 

            a) Strongly disagree    b) Disagree      c) Agree          d) Strongly Agree

 

3. Writing is not creative?

 

            a) Strongly disagree    b) Disagree      c) Agree          d) Strongly Agree

 

4. Some people are good at writing, and others are not?

 

            a) Strongly disagree    b) Disagree      c) Agree          d) Strongly Agree

 

5. The main purpose of writing is to finish an assignment?

 

            a) Strongly disagree    b) Disagree      c) Agree          d) Strongly Agree

 

6. The main purpose of writing is to communicate to others your thoughts, ideas, opinions and emotions?

 

            a) Strongly disagree    b) Disagree      c) Agree          d) Strongly Agree

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Name: __________________________                Date: _________________

 

 

 

Persuasive Writing Skills Checklist

 

Audience: _________________________________________

Writing Techniques: ____________________________________ Writers often use techniques to hook their audience and keep them engaged all throughout the story.  The following are four techniques that writers often use most. 

  1. Action: The author uses action words to describe an event or what a character is doing.
  2. Dialogue: The author uses dialogue to say something interesting or important.
  3. Thought or a Question:  The author shares something that he or she is thinking or asks a question.

 

Structure:

_____  I stated my position clearly

_____  I supported my position with 3 clear reasons

_____  I addressed the question being asked

_____  I organized my paper by writing in a logical way that makes sense to my audience

 

Writing Strategies:

_____  I wrote a multiple-paragraph essay that presents your ideas in a logical order.

_____  I provided details and transitional words that link my paragraph together.

_____  I wrote a concluding paragraph that summarizes important ideas and details

_____  I restated my position in my concluding paragraph

 

Proofreading:

_____  I used correct punctuation, capitalization, and grammar

_____  I used correct spelling

_____  I used a variety of sentence structures to make my writing interesting

_____  I  used vivid language to make my writing interesting

 

 

I have completed this checklist to the best of my knowledge:

 

Student Signature: ______________________________________________________

Persuasive Writing Rubric

 

 

4

·         I have taken a clear stand on an issue and I fully support it with appropriate personal or factual information.

·         I have chosen numerous specific details that more than adequately support my stand.

·         I have an organization that is logical and does not jump around.

·         I understand the type of audience I am writing for and I use language and arguments that they will understand.

·         I make good language choices to help influence the reader to agree with me.

 

3

·         I have taken a clear stand and I give it some support. The information is presented clearly.

·         I have chosen enough specific details to support my stand.

·         I have an organization that is logical but it strays a little.

·         I understand the type of audience I am writing for.

·         I make some good language choices to help influence the reader to agree with me.

 

2

·         I have taken a stand but I may not have made my position very clear. I tried to support it with some details but I may not have done a very good job. The details may not be the best ones I could have chosen or they might not even support my stand.

·         There are some details but they are too general or may not really help to explain my position.

·         I tried to have an organization but I did not do a good job with it and it tends to jump around.

·         I tried to understand the audience I was writing for.

·         I did not use good language choices to help influence the reader to agree with me.

 

1

·         I saw the prompt and I tried to respond to it. I did not take a stand on the issue. I presented some information but it still is not clear how I stand on the issue.

·         I have little or no details.

·         I have no real organization.

·         I did not try to write for the audience.

·         I did not use any language choices to help influence the reader to agree with me.

 

Persuasive Writing

 

 

 

 

What is persuasive writing?

Persuasive writing means writing to convince readers to think, feel, or act a certain way. Therefore, persuasive writing intends to convince the reader of an opinion or belief.

 

What is the purpose of persuasive writing?

The purpose of persuasive writing is to convince the reader that your point of view is valid.

 

What are some of the types of persuasive writing?

Editorial: a phrase or article by a news organization newspaper or magazine that expresses the opinion of the editor of a newspaper or magazine.

Advertisements: inform potential customers about products and services.

Speeches: intended to inform, influence, or entertain the listeners.

 

What is persuasive writing used for?

Persuasive writing is used to write speeches, letters to the editor, editorials, advertisements, pamphlets, petitions, scholarly writing, and opinion pieces.

 

 

 

 

Persuasive Writing Plan

 

    The main focus of a persuasive essay is to try to convince your audience to AGREE with your position!

Beginning

·         Clearly state your position.

·         State three reasons that support your position, which will become the topics of each of the three supporting paragraphs.

Middle

·         Remember, each topic sentence for the supporting paragraphs has been introduced in the beginning paragraph.

·         Use specific evidence, examples, and quotes to support your position.

·         Appeal to emotions! Use words that are likely to affect or change the reader’s mind.  

·         Be sure to use transitions words between paragraphs as they make it easy for the reader to follow your paper (e.g. First, second, in addition, in conclusion).

End

·         Restate your position. Remember, this is the last chance to remind the reader and convince him/her to accept your position.

·         Provide a satisfying ending or comment to leave your reader with a feeling of completion.

Persuasive Writing Tips!

In a persuasive essay, the writer must develop a topic which is debatable, that is has more than one side. It is important that the author understand both sides of the position so that the strongest information to counter the others can be presented. In the essay, only one side of the issue is presented. Remember the following as you write your narrative:

·         State your position!

·         Support your position with facts and reasons.  Do not use broad generalizations or personal opinions to persuade the reader.

·         Appeal to emotions!  Use words that are likely to affect or change the reader’s mind.

·         Use transition words between paragraphs.  Transition words make your essay easier to follow!

·         Restate your position in the conclusion. Do not introduce new material in the conclusion.

Score Sheet Checklist for 15 Week Intervention

 

Note:  Having a mark in any of these categories will indicate whether a behavior is present.  The checklist consists of five categories to measure off-task behavior. Theses categories include: 1) talking out; 2) being out of seat; 3) throwing things; 4) putting head down or sleeping; 5) drawing or scribbling. 

Legend

TO- Talking Out

OS- Being Out of Seat

TT- Throwing Things

HS- Putting Head Down or Sleeping

DS- Drawing or Scribbling

 

Off-Task Behavior Checklist

Name:

TO

OS

TT

HS

DS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Score Sheet Checklist for 15 Week Intervention

 

Note:  Having a mark in any of these categories will indicate whether a behavior is present.  The checklist consists of five categories to measure on-task behavior. Theses categories include: 1) reading aloud; 2) raising hands; 3) making eye contact; 4) participating in class discussions; 5) active participation. 

Legend

RA- Reading Aloud

RH- Raising Hands

EC- Making Eye Contact

RG- Participating in Revising Group Discussions

AP- Active Participation

 

On-Task Behavior Checklist

Name:

RA

RH

EC

RG

AP