March 23rd – Focus on Classrooom Management

Managing vs. Leading a Classroom

We started the afternoon by breaking into small groups and creating Classroom Management concept maps based on this week’s reading and personal experiences.  After each group completed a first draft, we went on a “Museum Walk” to view each other’s maps and provide feedback.  Each group then revised their original concept map based on ideas generated by viewing others.  Some of the common threads that resonated with all of us were (a) embedding humor and fun in the classroom and (b) encouraging student ownership of learning.   Clearly there are both traditional (behavior management) approaches and reform-based (proactive classroom leadership) approaches, and both have value.  Successful teachers keep a variety of tools in their toolkit and apply the ones that work in their unique situation.

Jo Ann Morreale shared her perspectives on the Joys and Challenges of Urban Education during the second half of class.  Jo Ann emphasized that teachers need to maintain a ‘half-full’ vs. ‘half-empty’ philosophy and find joy in each day.  She also gave some practical teacher tips, such as taking care of yourself and your personal hygiene.  Lastly, she shared a vignette of how she enabled a young woman to meet her lab minute requirement in an innovative way after a pregnancy.  We need more Jo Ann’s in the world!

The quiz and reading discussion rounded out the day.  We did a ‘think pair share’ exercise to compare personal classroom management challenges and ideas on how to overcome them.  The common threads from the discussions mirrored those that bubbled up from the concept map exercise, but were given more ‘life’ because they were specific examples.


  • No readings/quiz on March 31st – bring examples of student assessments
  • Don’t forget that Innovative Unit Design Papers are due on April 6th

Please feel free to comment if I misrepresented anything or if I left out something important.  Jim and I would also appreciate feedback on the quiz questions and discussion format – what worked and what didn’t  – thanks!

Last but not least, I want to thank Chris for taking pictures this week and posting them to Flicker.  Our class is much more ‘visual’ because of his talents!

ps – Here’s the Keynote/PowerPoint presentation from this week.
EDU448 Mar 23 Visuals

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