Larry Ferlazzo is an award-winning English and Social Studies teacher at Luther Burbank High School in Sacramento, Calif. In his popular EdWeek blog Classroom Q&A, he addresses readers’ questions on classroom management, ELL instruction, lesson planning, and other issues facing teachers.
Recently a couple of Stenhouse authors made an appearance to give advice on a wide range of topics from motivating students to parent-teacher relationships. Check back often for more advice!
Question: How can I deal with unmotivated students? I’m a little bit frustrated when I know my students don’t do their homework and sometimes they talk during my lessons.
Response from Cris Tovani: For me, engaging students at the emotional level is the easiest. This means I need to work to build personal relationships–to know and care about students. When that relationship is developed kids will often “work” harder just because they like me. However, just engaging them at the gut level isn’t enough. I also need to set up rituals and routines and model how they work in the classroom if I want behavioral engagement. However, just being behaviorally engaged isn’t enough either.”
Read the rest of Cris’ response on Classroom Q&A
Cris’ latest title is the DVD Talk to Me: Conferring to Engage, Differentiate, and Assess, 6-12
Question: How do we educate families about the ways in which they can support their children, without insulting their trust in us to do what’s best, and while not placing blame?
Response from Jane Baskwill: In order to operate from a position of trust rather than blame, schools–and teachers in particular–need to establish a positive relationship with families. Teachers need to create a supportive environment in which they demonstrate, through their words and actions, that they value parents’ knowledge as their children’s first teacher. By keeping the child at the center, all parties can feel they have a role to play and something valuable to contribute to the child’s learning.
Read the rest of Jane’s response on Classroom Q&A
Jane’s latest book is Attention-Grabbing Tools: Involving Parents in Their Children’s Learning
Questions: What do you do when you’re having a bad day in the classroom? How do you get over feelings of frustration?
Response from Terry Thompson: Let’s face it–no day in the classroom is perfect. Our energies are pulled in so many different directions that things are bound to get hectic from time to time. Considering how we merge time crunches, curriculum crunches, and even personality crunches, it’s easy to see how the occasional off day could derail us.
Read the rest of Terry response
Terry is the author of Adventures in Graphica: Using Comics and Graphic Novels to Teach Comprehension, 2-6
Add comment January 15th, 2014