The Assertive Classroom Manager

A fundamental requirement for being a good classroom manager is ASSERTIVENESS. Being an assertive teacher is not the same as being an aggressive teacher. Aggressive teachers tend to bully students with threats and loud speech. This type of teacher can be described as “one who lights up a room by leaving it.”Assertive teachers on the other hand make calm but firm declarations and calmly enforce rules of conduct in their classrooms. Assertive teachers are consistent in enforcing rules and policies in the classroom. They make appropriate eye contact with their stdents, they face their students when talking to them, and do not ask rhetorical questions when they require special behaviours from students. (“Chika, will you stop talking O.K.?”). Rather they’ll say, (Chika, stop talking O.K?)

Assertive teachers do not threaten students nor express an intention to inflict pain. Instead, they give promises that are fulfilled each time a class rule is violated. There is a difference!. When they inform a student that he or she will miss break time or recess the next time the student refuses to complete or do homework, they unemotionally keep the student in during break time immediately they commit the offence again. Students know the rules and consequences for disobeying them, they have the opportunity to choose right or poot conduct and therefore to choose to receive either an undesireable or negative consequence, or a positive consequence. Efficient classroom managers or teachers who have planned well do not prepare their management when behaviour issues arise. They make their classroom management plan and rules, which they thoroughly explain to their students, and initiat on the first day of school. The plan is designed and made ready before school opens. It is really necessary to determine a few class behaviours and rules that will be repeatedly enforced, the unpleasant consequence for violators, the positive consequences for good behaviour, and the process for administering the consequences, and then to communicate the plan’s details to all members of the class

The rules, which should not number more than four or five, are to be reasonable, observable, and enforceable. Some teachers prefer to keep conduct rules (no talking without permission) separate from academic rules (work independently on seat-work). Rules should be more specific than “be good” when, for example, you wish to regulate talking, but not too specific (“no talking”). A compromise would be to have the students “raise hands before speaking.” Rules should be printed and posted on dedicated areas of the class so that they are legible from all points in the room. Since different activities may require different lists of rules and directions, it is wise to prepare, in advance, charts with different sets of rules and directions so that instructional time will not be unnecessarily used for this purpose when changing activities.


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