classroom management strategies and techniques

5 Effective Classroom Management Strategies & Techniques for 2021

Although all-prevailing, the topic of classroom management is underrated. When discussed, it’s often reduced to mere doling out rewards and dispensing false praise.

As a result, poor classroom behavior and classroom disruptions continue to linger in the air ominously.

But there are ways to supercharge your classroom.

Positive Action programs take classroom management to a whole new level.

We believe it’s best to treat the cause, not the symptom, to get to the root of the problem and teach students how to make positive behavioral choices.

We can modify reality by the actions we take.

So, check out our roundup of 5 highly efficient classroom management strategies and techniques for 2021.

What Are the Four Components of Classroom Management?

Breaking down tasks into manageable chunks is half the work done.

Likewise, the key to successful classroom management is dividing it into its four major components. The table below equips you with areas of focus, so you can work your way from there.

1. Classroom Design

Arrange your classroom furniture, accessories, and learning aids thoughtfully. Think students' desks, learning stations, and device placement.

2. Instructional Technique

Switch between learning styles with different classes. For example, you can engage your 3rd graders with digital gamification elements. Pique the curiosity of your 8th graders with small group discussions on their favorite topics.

3. Classroom Rules

Lead your class with a firm hand but make sure that students get the message. If you do well in the other departments, they’ll understand the rules are in everyone’s best interests.

4. Organization

Keep your lessons organized and show up on time.

What Are Some Classroom Management Techniques?

A friendly attitude, eye contact, and moving away from rigid modes of communication can help build student rapport.

Displaying enthusiasm goes a long way in making students engaged, but this doesn’t mean you have to become a teacher on steroids.

Stemming from Greek enthousiasmos, (‘inspired by a god’), enthusiasm means doing something with zeal.

In reality, this isn’t hard to pull off as long as you keep approaching your subject with curiosity. This interest is likely to rub off on your students.

Teaching in the 21st century means scrambling to win your student’s attention.

Teaching with poise is how you gain the upper hand over the distractions new technologies pose.

Qin Zhang of Fairfield University has coined a term for this — “emotional contagion.” While it doesn't necessarily impact student behavior, it impacts the student's learning curve.

Use Personalized Learning

Personalized learning brings positive results in both classroom discipline and class performance.

This classroom management technique is based on the premise that each student comes with a set of unique abilities. Schools are, in turn, responsible for harnessing these abilities.

A professor at Eastern Florida State College, Patty Kohler-Evans, has designed techniques aimed at establishing rapport with her students. She also uses techniques to obtain information on her student’s personal learning preferences.

Below is what she calls an identification of personal interests activity.

Kohler-Evans uses it to elicit information on her students’ learning preferences early on in the learning process.

One way to do it is to interview students or ask them to present information in writing. This strategy is forceful as you can use this knowledge throughout the rest of your course. You can use it to fine-tune your teaching and make instructional changes in your class.

You can also use Moodle to create customized quizzes to obtain the information you need.

Integrate Experiential Learning

Perhaps the most dreaded situation for a teacher is having a classroom chock-full of disengaged students. With experiential learning, you can engage even the rowdiest ones.

When actively engaged in learning, students get more engaged emotionally and are likely to learn faster. Hands-on learning requires problem-solving and critical thinking, resulting in enhanced knowledge retention.

Traditional learning

  • Teacher-centered
  • A student is more of a passive listener
  • Fixed lesson structure and scoring system

Experiential learning

  • Student-centered
  • Students are encouraged to explore the course content in original ways and learn through experience
  • Open lesson structure and learning outcomes

One way to integrate hands-on training is to do a Pro and Con Grid exercise. You use an open-ended topic that’s part of the current lesson and get students to write pros and cons for a chosen concept.

This way, you can get the entire class to take initiative, reflect on the topic, and synthesize the new observations they’ve made.

Use Response to Intervention

Response to intervention (RTI) is a strategy you use to identify and support students with learning or behavior needs.

The idea behind RTI is to identify trouble spots on time. If need be, you then support the identified students with individual intervention or in small groups. The goal is to improve student’s prerequisite skills by delivering exercises to help reinforce key lesson concepts.

Use the templates below to help students set their learning and behavior goals.

  • “I, (student’s name), will complete 5 extra questions about Past Perfect each weeknight for the next two weeks.”

  • “I, (student’s name), will not disrupt the class while the teacher is instructing. Should I have any inquiries, I’ll raise my hand.”

Practice Interdisciplinary Teaching

Want a universal remedy that’ll get your students 99% engaged? Give interdisciplinary teaching a test run. Drawing on different learning disciplines creates an open and creative learning environment.

This can become so maddeningly fun that your classroom becomes a playground where students (just wait until you hear this) want to hang out.

Students work on real-world problems by exploring different angles to a topic. Nothing beats this when it comes to building creative and critical thinking skills.

Below are some examples:

  • Do news analysis. Get students to apply skills gained in different classes to solve a problem from a news clip or local newspapers

  • Combine history, creative writing, and IT. Cover a historical figure, get students to co-create related content in the English class, then get them to upload their articles on a school website in the computer science class

Below is another interdisciplinary example with suggested activities within the Olympics topic.

Pave the Way to a More Disciplined and Engaged Classroom

Teachers are facing learning and discipline problems on a day-to-day basis.

If they only had the right tools to settle the matter once and for all.

The classroom management techniques above can help. You can integrate them into your lesson plans to help keep your students on the ball.

However, antisocial behavior and poor academic achievement often go hand in hand and are deep-rooted.

Positive Action relies on The Thoughts-Actions-Feelings Circle (TAF) to prevent problem behaviors and promote positive behavior.

“The philosophy of the Positive Action program is that you feel good about yourself when you do positive actions for your whole self: the physical, intellectual, social, and emotional areas. Having these holistic skills prepares you in every way; you can have healthy emotional well-being as well as success in academics — you don’t have to choose.” - Dr. Carol Allred, developer of the Positive Action program

We offer a systematic approach to classroom management.

Our program shows an 85% reduction in disciplinary referrals, and we’re proud to have been granted accolades from the U.S. Department of Education.

As Charles Dederich once said: “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

Make it count with our Positive Action program. Our educational curriculum focuses on integrated social and emotional learning that helps students reach their full potential.

Enroll in our program training today or create buy-in for this rigorously researched program to pave the way for positive school reform.