If a class gets a little unruly..,

Then look to your lesson plan. Chances are, something isn’t right.

That’s right. It’s probably the TEACHER’S FAULT as to why a class is “off the chains.”

A lot of times (and I will admit, myself included before), teachers will blame the students’ misbehavior/disruptiveness on them. “What awful students!” and “They get worse every year” are common statements I’ve heard uttered. In my first week at a new school with a new student body, I had the pleasure of experiencing one of my freshman classes get a little out of hand… I could feel my control slipping, and I could tell their interest was waning. And they were taking it out on each other.

After they left I immediately thought: I can’t rely on my old lesson plans over the last 8 years anymore. I’m going to have to go back to the drawing board, because I could tell/feel my chosen activities weren’t received well. I could see the reluctance and even slight frustration my students were having in participating. They weren’t willing to jump into being silly and working in groups. They weren’t ready to be on-the-spot. I needed to take a step back & SET THEM UP MORE FOR SUCCESS. Work on those team-working skills in a disguised/unintimidating way.

So I called some fellow teachers in the field. Veteran drama teachers who I admire. And I asked for their advice. I even tweeted drama teachers in other countries I’ve connected to for help!! What are drama teachers elsewhere doing that’s successful?

It’s only WEEK TWO now. I’m determined to win my students over. I’m determined to give them a positive, growing experience this year– without fear of being humiliated. I’m determined to have a great year with them!

I came to school today with new ideas and new approaches I’ve never tried before. And my not-so-easy class was manageable today. Go figure 🙂

So it’s on me. Their teacher. I’m going to roll up my sleeves to continue choosing the right stuff for my new students that’s going to engage them & grow them. I’m going to drag out all resources and see what else I can do…

And I ain’t afraid to ask for help! Near and far!!

And you shouldn’t either, veteran or new teacher.

So teachers, when things get a little crazy– look to your lesson plan. Was there something you could have done better? Cuz chances are– there is…

P.S. Thank you Sarah, Amy & Keri for your “pearls of wisdom.” 😉

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