How you respond to difficult behavior is often the key to defusing it. I believe the amount of learning in the classroom is only as good as your classroom management skills. Every teacher has his or her own personalized strategies for building enthusiasm and learning in the classroom. I like to use my passion and knowledge to get students engaged in material. I am able to read my students and understand them on a individual level, which I believe is key to successful classroom management.
Students gain trust in teachers by trusting they are consistent, responsible and are there to keep them safe. This trust is built through rules and routines in the classroom starting from day one and holding strong until the last day of class.
My classroom is designed to foster creative learning in a safe, clean and comfortable environment. Classroom environment is often over looked in classrooms but I strongly believe that is crucial to learning. I like to keep my classroom welcoming, comfortable and warm by decorating with plants, inspirational posters, resources, and books.
To plan for the upcoming year I like to pull out my calendar and map out seasons, holidays, and any cultural references that would potentially inspire my curriculum content. Holidays and events such as Diwali, St. Patrick’s Day, The Nutcracker, Lunar New Year, and Halloween are all already mapped out for you and are rich with culture, history and dance! I find inspiration in what is in season and relevant to what is going on when planning my designing my lessons. I embrace the input from the students and read what they are interested in, so I am flexible and understanding should the class go in a different direction than planned.
One of my favorite aspects of being a dance educator is having the ability to make a dance out of any subject or theme. This is why I like to challenge myself and know what the students are learning outside of the dance classroom and incorporate it kinesthetically. Brining art to life at The MET is one of my favorite things to do at school. I have created dances about the Monarch butterfly migration, the universe, fractions, division, healthy eating. I get so excited thinking about all the ways kinesthetic movement can enhance learning in other curriculums.
After each class I like to jot down notes in my Google drive about what worked really well and what needs improvement. Since I am a new teacher I like to see how can I make this better or reflect on wh
at happened. I think reflection is so important not only for the teachers but for thestudents as well. Students will keep a dance journal that stays in the classroom. We will keep record of everything we learned including before and after pictures to see how much we’ve grown.
Being joyful and happy is contagious, and the students embody the energy and emotion you have. This is why just like I tell my students to leave it at the door, I have to do the same myself. I use humor as an avenue of staying happy and positive. As a professional dancer, it may be difficult to let go out the seriousness and strict discipline about dance the is instilled in me and realize that these students may not want to be professional dancers, or are there because they have to be. It’s important to let it go and laugh.