My Vision for the Future of Classroom Management
Historically, classroom management has been one of the greatest challenges that every teacher must overcome on a day-to-day basis. Each educator acquires his/her own unique set of strategies for handling common problems like interruptions, bullying, and the management of effective group work.
As with every other area of education and life in general, technology is rapidly altering the way we do classroom management. New challenges and new solutions will shape the classroom of the future.
Here’s how the future looks for these common classroom management issues.
Collaboration and Group Work
No matter how much time and thought goes into creating groups, there will always be a few in which personalities clash. Not to mention, it’s impossible for just one person to stay on top of the many student interactions to ensure that they are all healthy and productive.
But with the new apps that are increasingly available, teachers can rely on computer algorithms to create groups for them. And as technology offers countless platforms for students to share and communicate in the digital space, teachers can monitor their interactions more effectively.
Remember the days when you had a few loud students who always monopolized the conversation? Others were too afraid to speak up for fear of ridicule or just the embarrassment of getting an answer wrong. With new response systems, teachers and students can communicate privately any time, in class or outside of it. Students can ask questions or alert their teacher when they don’t understand something. When teachers pose a question in class, they can hear answers from everyone, rather than just the one or two who speak first.
Student Ownership of Learning
Increasingly, classrooms are moving away from the old “sage on the stage” model of learning. The teacher is no longer the sole dispenser of knowledge, and students are no longer simply a captive audience. With online resources and personalized apps and tools, students construct learning and knowledge independently, leading to a greater sense of engagement and ownership. Teachers are moving into the role of sideline facilitators and no longer under pressure to keep antsy students focused on teacher lectures for an entire class period.
Regulation of Student’s Online Activity
New technology always brings with it new discipline challenges. The manifestations of cyberbullying, academic dishonesty, and misuse of resources take different forms as new tools are introduced. It’s in the nature of youth to find ways around the rules. It’s critical that educators stay abreast of each new tool and its potential benefits and challenges so that they can be proactive in limiting student misbehavior.
It seems clear that classroom management in the future will become far less of a nemesis to teachers than it is right now. But teachers will need to keep up with these tools to use them efficiently.