Classroom Management Strategies and other Teacher Worthy Ideas
It’s near the end of your year with your students and you’re emotionally and probably physically exhausted! I truly understand. I know you feel like a David constantly fighting battles with your Goliath, whether it be behavior problems, truly under motivated students/families, overwhelming paper work/data reports, class size larger than is really workable, truly mountains of demands from your Principal, etc. etc. etc.
But is it just you or are others feeling this same way? Here’s your answer. Jill Jenkins has just completed a post after reading a book written by someone who seems to understand.
One book that she strongly recommends is David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcom Gladwell. At first she was ready to throw it down because of the author’s seemingly penchant toward supporting smaller class size as a way to solve many of our education. It’s not and neither does Gladwell feel that way. She kept on reading. She found that:
“Finally, the book admits that even though small class size from 10-20 had no significant difference, class sizes above 30 did and class sizes over 40 had devastating results. ” And Gladwell uses sources to reinforce the fact that family disfunction, i.e. one parent being incarcerated, does affect a child’s academic/emotional success. Truth is no stronger than this! That is a Goliath that we can’t defeat but we can encourage and support our student.
Jenkins also reminded us the huge difference between “lenient” grading in public high schools vs. more stringent requirements in most colleges. Her feeling is that most high schools are giving higher grades than are really earned and understood because of parental pressure. There just might be some concrete background to that theory.
Jenkins also suggests that perhaps our public high schools need to make challenges harder to truly prepare students for college. I’ve often heard reported about the increasing number of Freshmen college students needing remedial English grammar and/or writing classes before they can take any future classes! I believe that’s a failure of our local high schools.
So, I recommend that you read this book and/or read the complete post by Jill Jenkins and become a David the next time you meed your Goliath!