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Assess Teachers’ Discipline Style

EducationWorld is pleased to present this professional development resource shared by Dr. Jane Bluestein, an expert in relationship-building, positive school climate and effective instruction.

As an educator, are you aware of your classroom discipline style?

For many, the word “discipline” conjures up thoughts of reactive and controlling measures for dealing with student misbehavior. Teachers who use these “old school,” authoritarian and win-lose approaches often find them frustrating and ineffective. In contrast, a 21st-century model of discipline uses an ongoing, proactive set of strategies to create a cooperative environment that minimizes the likelihood of negative, disruptive behavior.

So are you more “old school” or “21st century” when it comes to classroom management? Complete this quick assessment to determine the end of the spectrum toward which your classroom discipline style falls.

Shifting to the beliefs and behaviors associated with 21st-century discipline can result in increased student cooperation, responsibility and engagement, and a decrease in power struggles, disruption and general stress in the classroom environment. For an in-depth discussion of this topic, read the EducationWorld article Goodbye, Authoritarian Discipline: Gain Staff Buy-In.

Your Discipline Philosophy: Teacher Self-Assessment provides a great staff meeting activity. Once educators have completed the survey, try using the results as a springboard for discussion.

This article and handout were excerpted and adapted from The Win-Win Classroom (2008) by Jane Bluestein, Ph.D. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Publishing.

Related resources

Also from Dr. Bluestein:
Is Your School Emotionally Safe?
Accommodating Student Sensory Differences
Tips for Positive Teacher-Parent Interaction
The Art of Setting Boundaries
The Beauty of Losing Control, Part 1
The Beauty of Losing Control, Part 2
Stressful Student Experiences: What Not to Do

About Dr. Bluestein

Dr. Jane Bluestein is a speaker, trainer and specialist in programs and resources related to relationship building, effective instruction and personal development.

She is an award-winning author whose books include Creating Emotionally Safe Schools, High School’s Not Forever, 21st Century Discipline, The Win-Win Classroom and many others. In addition, she has appeared on CNN, National Public Radio and "The Oprah Winfrey Show."

Dr. Bluestein, formerly a classroom teacher, crisis-intervention counselor and teacher training program coordinator, currently heads Instructional Support Services, Inc., a consulting and resource firm in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Visit her Web site to access free resources, order books, read her blog and more.

Article by Celine Provini, EducationWorld Editor
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