This week’s video, inspired by YouTube commenter Kelli, is all about those kids who won’t stop talking when it’s time to get to work. Warning: It’s been a long week and this video is a rambling mess. Still, it’s honest and I’m too tired to re-film. Here’s what happens when I go off-script: Click here […]

Today’s topic comes from an email exchange (used with permission) with one of our colleagues in the art department:

Hi Laura,
I was just watching your video on troublemakers and how to handle them. I really appreciate the refresher. I used that technique at the beginning of my teaching career but in recent years got caught up in students’ non-stop bad behaviors and basically gave up out of exhaustion. I’m an art teacher and will be starting at a new school in a couple of weeks. It’s a dream job. My strength is content knowledge not discipline. But I want this year to be the beginning of a new era for me, so I’ve been doing my own form of professional development this summer. Continue reading

This week, I’m chatting about old school techniques to help calm the chaos: Continue reading

Blog reader Stephanie will transfer this fall from elementary to high school (Can you even imagine?) and recently asked what the first day of school looks like in my classroom, so let’s unlock the door to good ol’ Room H-9 and take a look. Continue reading

Confession time: My internal thermostat tends to get stuck on sweaty mode. I swear, there’s a clan of hamsters forever running on wheels inside me; as a result, I am always too warm. Take my natural “glow,” then add the gymnastics floor routine I perform while I’m lecturing along with the heat thrown off by […]

Using a positive approach to discipline, I’ve discovered that five minutes of my time can win a student’s heart forever. Whether it’s part of a formal classroom procedure (five “caught being good” moments = one phone call home) or just an informal call to a student’s parents on a whim, I’ve always had success when I make a positive phone call home.

How a typical call goes: Continue reading

Every year, without fail, the power play begins. In the first week of school, there’s always at least one class with That Kid. You know, the one who’s testing you. Rolling his eyes. Not-so-covertly texting on her phone. Or, more aggressively, dropping a snarky comment in the midst of your lecture. The battle for control […]