#108: A Simple, Effective Behavior Management System

classroom management Oct 20, 2022

Classroom management woes? We’ve all struggled with students' behavior in the classroom at one time or another.

The backbone of your classroom, the part that supports everything else you do, is your classroom management system. Honestly, just about any system can work, if it fits you and your teaching style. The key is your system needs to be simple, easy to use and manage all day, and sustainable over the long haul that is a school year.


I know you've heard this before, but teaching really is a marathon, not a sprint. 

In order to not just survive but thrive in the midst of the marathon, good classroom systems must be in place and that includes your classroom management system. In this episode, we'll chat about a simple system to make managing your students' behavior a little bit easier. In fact, if used consistently, your students will learn how to begin to take responsibility for their...

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#106: How to Teach Classroom Systems and Routines

classroom management Sep 09, 2022

As teachers, we talk a lot about classroom systems and procedures. But...

do you know what systems and routines you should have, how to teach them and how long you should expect to spend teaching them?

Today, I have the skinny on all my classroom systems, routines, and procedures and how I incorporate training my students during the school day and over the first weeks of school.



Teaching classroom systems or procedures is a foundational piece of a well-run classroom.  

It's impossible for students to know what to do if we don't train them. The last thing we want is to leave the details of how things should be done in our classrooms to chance. Imagine driving down the road and having to just use "common sense" to figure out what the best way to drive your car is - no training necessary. It would be a disaster on the road! The same is true for your classroom. 

Be specific about what...

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#099: Why Shouting is a Sign of Deeper Classroom Management Problems

classroom management Jun 09, 2022

News Flash! I have shouted at my class. Ok, who hasn’t, really?! In fact, I've had my share of classroom management problems too.

So I know from experience when it comes to behavior management in your class, yelling [more than on rare occasions] is a sign of a deeper classroom management problem. I don’t do a lot of classroom management episodes, but truly behavior management is something that pervades all areas of teaching and needs to be discussed in the context of various teaching times and situations so you can simply teach.

 In case you haven’t guessed….Today, we’re talking about classroom management strategies in the literacy classroom.


If you find yelling is not a rare occurrence for you, to have to shout to gain back control of your class, or you find yourself lecturing about behavior more than you’d like…then you already know [deep down] that...

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#086: How to Do a Classroom Management Spring Reset

classroom management Mar 10, 2022

This time of year classroom management and behavior problems can start to surface or become even worse than they already were…

So today, let’s chat about getting a reset or restart on your classroom management. Sometimes we have to retrain and restart to gain a firmer foothold with managing our classrooms and dealing with student misbehavior. It’s easy to forget that our students are just that – students – kids - and they are still learning so many things. Including how to behave ALL day long.

That’s why we need to retrain periodically. We also need to remember…we are human and prone to making mistakes. Maybe we are not being as consistent as we were in the beginning of the year [because let’s face it…consistency is the root of most – not all - classroom management problems].

So, let’s take a break from reading strategies and talk classroom management today.


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#077: How to Teach Listening Skills in Elementary Grades

Do you ever catch yourself saying things like “stop talking and listen” or "turn it off and listen" or some other variation on that theme? Knowing how to listen and connect is fast becoming a lost art. Our students and many adults go through life in their personal sound bubbles [aka. Headphones]. This kind of isolation can inhibit our students' abilities to listen and comprehend in real-time. If your students seem to hear less and less of what you say...you’re not alone!

Today, I have 5 ways to teach and strengthen listening skills.


Listening is all about hearing patterns, differentiating sounds, and pulling out or extracting the information we need from the fluff.

This is much harder than it seems. Like so many things in our lives, listening is something we do without thinking so much of the time. That doesn't mean we do it well all of the time though. How often do you...

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#076: January Back-to-School Success: How to Lay the Foundation

When heading back to school in January, it's easy to think that your students know what to do and can just jump right back in. You spent all that time at the beginning of the school year training your students in systems, routines, and all the rules and expectations for your class. Your students have it down, right?! Unfortunately, that is not the case. 


Getting our students back into the swing of things efficiently and effectively means we have to SLOW DOWN in order to go fast the rest of the year.

Slowing down can be so hard! We have so much to do and testing pressure is beginning in January as well. I know you're yelling at me (maybe just in your head) but take a breath and hear me out for just a minute.

Listen in.

Your students have had 2 weeks off with varying activities, sleep levels, routines, and schedules (or lack thereof).  those kiddos are not going to remember all the rules...

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#075: Empowering Students with Self-Regulation and Coping Skills with Dr. Michael Gaskell

How do you empower your students to learn to cope better and to self-regulate? We're all dealing with different forms of stress and even trauma these days. Students often show their stress in their behavior at school, sabotaging themselves and disrupting others. So how do we move forward and help our students do the same?

We are imperfect teachers and we can't do everything by ourselves. I know that's not a shock. But, admitting there's a problem or even just asking for help is tough.  It is the first step though. As we all know, there's been a LOT of trauma for us and teachers and for our students [now more than ever]. 


We've heard the term "mastery" for years. It's a lofty goal. We expect it from our students but is it really doable all the time? What if we expected progress over mastery? Remarkably imperfect progress. 

Meet Dr. Michael Gaskell, a middle school...

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#063: How to Harness the Power of Morning Meetings in Your Classroom

classroom management Sep 30, 2021
Do you hold Morning Meetings in your class or are you a morning meeting avoider?


While many of us hold morning meetings, many teachers feel the time spent is better used in teaching content. I get it. All teachers are pushed for teaching time. You grab every second we can get to squeeze in a little more learning, right?!

Holding morning meetings can feel like one more thing to do, one more thing to plan for when you're already feeling maxed out. They don't have to be complicated. Actually, morning meetings should have the same format each day, a structure. Once you have that setup, it stays in place. You will change up some of the specifics, but simply create a schedule for the month and then it's done. Just take 10 minutes each month and plan the schedule. Want some ideas? Grab the Morning Meeting Planning Guide. 

There are lots of reasons to hold morning meetings both social and academic. I use...

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#059: 5 Ways to Sabotage Your Students' Independence

classroom management Sep 02, 2021
Do you foster or sabotage your students' independence? We all do things without knowing or intending to in the midst of our busy teacher days. 


We're human. Mistakes are going to happen. And while we want our students to take on as much independence as they can, sometimes we hinder that very independence without knowing it.

Today's episode is all about...you guessed it, student independence!

I KNOW you want to be that teacher whose classroom runs like clockwork. You know the one...where students know just what to do and get on with it, for the most part, without discussion or argument. What teacher doesn't want that?! 

Well, there are 2 questions you have to ask yourself:

1. What are am I doing that might be hindering that?


2. How do I fix it so my students can be independent workers?

Listen in and find out. 

In this episode, find out: 
  • The best policies around assignments,...
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#058: How to Make Transitions in the Classroom Easier

classroom management Aug 26, 2021
Giving students a designated, structured way to transition from one activity to the next all day long can set you and your students up for success all day!


Transitions in the classroom, all those little moments when your students are moving from one activity to the next, really can make or break your day. I know that sounds like a bold claim, but it's really true. When we don't have strong systems and procedures for transitioning in our classrooms, we lose our students' attention and sometimes their good behavior as well.

Today's episode is all about how to set up and direct the transition times in your day. And guess what...you and your students make tons of transitions each and every day. I think you'll be surprised by how many transitions there are that you haven't even thought about. 

It's really easy to lose students when changing activities, moving from one space in the classroom or school to...

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