Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I Stopped Policing My Class as They Walk Down the Hallway

I stopped owning my students' behavior as they walk down the hallway. They know what the expectations are and why it is important to use whisper voices. Reminding them, pulling them out of line if they talk too loud, having them go back and try it again...none of that works. Maybe it does for that moment, but it all begins again the next time we walk down the hall. So I asked students what they think we should do. How could we solve this problem of talking too loud in the hallways? Their solution was to play the "1,2,3 Quiet Game" and as soon as I said those words, they'd be quiet. If they made it the entire way, they could get a marble in a jar. We tried that. But, it really didn't work. I still had to monitor, manage, and police their behavior.

I decided that they needed to own this line behavior. They needed to monitor themselves. So I told the class that whoever was the line leader that week would be the person in charge. That person will determine how the class did and if he or she felt the line was marble worthy, he or she would give them a marble.

I no longer police my class line. I step right in line with them. If I hear someone talking loud, I don't say a word. The Line Leader stops at a few stopping points along the way so the class can catch up and monitor themselves. Once the line is quiet again, the Line Leader begins again. When we get back to the class, the Line Leader either gives a marble or not.

Walking down the hall has become a pleasant time for me. I always start out with "Okay, Abby (or whoever the line leader is that day) is ready to do her job! She is in charge. One, two, three, quiet game!" Then off we go. Their line behavior was never this good when I did the reminding, warning, and policing.  What other things can could my students be in charge of?

1 comment:

  1. This is an excellent idea. Thanks for sharing it with us. I'm going to start using it tomorrow.