The Best Classroom Management (updated)

on December 18th, 2012, I posted “The Best Classroom Management” which said this:

For the last couple of years, when I get asked about my classroom management, I’ve responded:

The best classroom management is a meaningful curriculum.

I love that line. What I want to know is if it’s a quote that I have stolen from someone that I haven’t remembered or recognized.

Can you help me out? Are you aware that the above line belongs to someone else? Let me know in the comments so that I can start giving credit where it’s due.

Well, it turns out that someone else said that and said it better than me (that is a frequent occurrence, quite frankly).

Paul Barnwell (@MindfulStew) is a teacher in Kentucky and wrote a fantastic piece on his blog Mindful Stew called “The Great Discipline Conundrum” in which he lays out some basic conflicts in looking at school discipline.

Toward the end of the piece he states:

So what is my approach to discipline?  Working at a variety of schools, I’ve found that if I focus most of my energy on building relationships with students, crafting engaging lessons, and  practicing class procedures, then I’ve usually avoided major class disruptions.  I take great pride in trying to connect with students across races and socioeconomic groups.

I don’t buy the argument that it’s the students job to sit there, be quiet, and learn.  Sure, there is always a student who is going to pop off no matter what I do.  I’ve had students who are bipolar, been rape victims, and are hungry when they enter the classroom, among other conditions I can’t control.   All I know if if I sit back and pass out work packets and expect students to comply, I’m putting myself in a tenuous position.

Like I said, he said it better than me.

Although to be fair, my little quote would fit better on a bumper sticker…

… for what that’s worth.

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