On the first day of class, we asked our new group of 14 teachers the following question: what would you see going on in a classroom in which there is a supportive climate for students? As we started diving into the topic of the week, we asked our participants to reflect on their classroom experiences. If given the opportunity to create your “perfect classroom”, how would you create it? Which characteristics would it have?
How to reach this perfect balance, though? What tools, strategies and attitudes can they use to become great managers of their classes?
Having defined our end goal, participants worked hard during the week to fill their toolbox of skills and practical ideas useful to reach it. Starting from Social Emotional Learning, the capacity of individuals to recognize their own, and other people's emotions, to discriminate between different feelings and label them appropriately, and to use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior. By testing some activities together, participants recognized it as a major factor able to improve the classroom environment by creating a more tolerant and supportive atmosphere.
In order to be more inclusive and welcoming toward diversity, the group later explored four ways through which they can better diversify their teaching: Content (what the student learns), Process (how the student learns), Product (how the student demonstrates learning) and Environment (where the student learns). The activity performed to approach these four aspects was called “learning stations”: in each station, one of the four topics above mentioned was discussed in a different way. This activity was much appreciated because it gave lots of different inputs and ideas to bring back to their classes.
The fourth part of the course was focused on communication, especially investigating the difference between fixed and growth mindset. After being put to test and challenged on the assumptions they had about their own mindsets, the group analyzed the characteristics of what is called “growth mindset” and put their knowledge to practice by doing some group exercises.
More info on this course at: https://www.erasmustrainingcourses.com/classroom-management.html