Musings about the importance and impact of art and art education in the 21st century.

Musings about the importance of art and art education

1, 2, 3 Magic

♠ Posted by ArtMuse in at 5:23 PM
The first two hours of school on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of last week and this week were spent doing beginning of the year assessments for most of the grades. While proctoring for the tests I happened to come upon a book by our behavior intervention specialist called 123 Magic for Teachers: Effective Classroom Discipline Pre-k-8th grade by Dr. Thomas W Phelan and Sarah Jane Schonour. Being that I had the time, and it was very quiet I started to thumb through the book. I've been having some serious behavior issues in most of my classes including physical attacks by students on their peers, curing, crying, students chasing one another around the room, not sharing, arguing, and name calling. All of which make the fact that they hardly settle down long enough for me to get a sentence out pretty minor. Needless to say maybe this book will help, because frankly, I think I'm going to need all the help I can get!

The book is based on the idea of two types of behavior, 'start' behavior and 'stop' behavior. Start being doing your work, cleaning up, putting things away, transitioning, etc. Stop being, talking, yelling, fighting, getting out of your seat, etc. Both of these behaviors are handled slightly differently with 'stop' behaviors using a 1,2,3 couting method to redirect and make student take responsiblity for their actions. This counting coupled with what the authora call a 'no talking, no emotions' approach on the part of the teacher should, in theory, work. So, instead of disucssing matters with students (most matters, but of course, some matters will need to be addressed and discussed) that you simply do not get emotional, launch into a verbal tyrade, and just be fair, unbiased, and consistent. Easy right? Sure...25 yelling kids, art supplies, 45 mintes, nooo problem!

In addition to that in chapter 3 the six types of manipulation and testing behaviors exhibited by students which include badgering, tempertantrums, threats, martyrdom, buttering up, and physical tactics. Many of these are used in conjunction with one another and will happen in the span of 1 encounter. Unlike most books I've read, the examples given in this book are pretty true to form and as I read I was thinking to myself, 'yup, that's happened to me', or 'that reminds me of student x in so and so's class'.

Don't get me wrong I"m by no means plugging this book, I haven't even given its approach a test run yet, but I figure its as good a place to start as any, and after reading it, it gave me a glimmer of hope that I might tryp a managment strategy with a chance of it actually working. I'm going to try it tomorrow on one of my first and third grade classes. We shall see....