Reflective and restorative practices are not new, writes middle school administrator Sara Johnson, but the pandemic has created an even greater need to view discipline as a tool to guide and support the social-emotional learning of tweens and teens. Here’s how Sara does it.
Is there a price students must pay to earn a teacher’s respect? The posters in Dina Strasser’s classroom and school seem to frame “respect” as a transaction. Given the power and skill imbalance that exists between student and teacher, can that possibly be good practice?
With unprecedented levels of stress among adolescents, and promising new research from leading institutions, there’s never been a better or more crucial time to implement mindfulness practices into middle school classrooms, says author-consultant Dr. Thomas Armstrong.
How do teachers’ assumptions about what students know impede the learning process? Michelle Russell is realizing the “obvious” is sometimes not so obvious to kids in her math classes. Her two big problem areas: basic rules of behavior and prior knowledge of operations.
The newly revised and resource-rich PBIS Team Handbook does an excellent job of breaking down what PBIS is, what it means to schools, and how effective it can be when implemented properly. The authors make a convincing case for Tier 1 implementation, says Christina Williams.
Chris Weber’s useful book, Behavior: The Forgotten Curriculum, An RTI Approach for Nurturing Essential Life Skills, seeks to help schools implement MTSS for behavior in a systematic, practical way, with or without formal adoption of PBIS, writes principal Rita Platt.
Dina Brulles and Karen L. Brown help teachers think through the challenges of grouping and offer resources to develop effective groups and differentiate as needed for specific purposes. Teacher Kathleen Palmieri finds the author’s guidance on behavior particularly helpful.
As the school year winds down and heightened emotions proliferate, it’s easy for teachers to lose their cool. Student (and parent) behavior that would have been met with patience earlier suddenly ratchets up teacher frustrations. Rita Platt shares her coping strategies – laughter included!
Psychotherapist Noah Kempler presents ways to help kids develop five core skills: understanding feelings, communication, flexibility, respect, and problem solving. Retired principal Mary Langer Thompson finds his discussion about temperament particularly valuable.
The restorative practices advocated by authors Dominique Smith, Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey invite teachers “to switch their energies from rules to relationships, and provide meaningful instruction,” writes reviewer and instructional coach Glenda Moyer.