It was a rough start, with little light to shine in the darkness, but I have really grown into my profession.
Things are so much clearer in retrospect. When I first started teaching in Texas, I had several years of experience teaching students from other countries (Cambodia and Spain.) I had no behavioral issues with the students and the culture was very respectful towards teachers. Parents, administrators, and students looked up to the teacher in ways that get lost here in Texas public schools.
However, I have learned that a simple implementation of classroom management will go a LOOOOOONG way in addressing issues with the most important group of people, my students.
Students will respond when they have procedures. In my class, students greet me at the door before entering. They sign in as soon as they enter the classroom. They grab their portfolio (folders) and begin their daily warmups, which are projected on the board.
I take attendance during this time, so as not to take up valuable classroom time completing that simple task.
Varied projects will also keep the students engaged. We use technology, we play with clay, we play with paint, we paint on walls, we use mirrors, we take trips to the museum and the zoo, we make masks and act in the auditorium, we go outside and draw nature, we pose and model for each other, and we sometimes sing.
This is my third year as an art teacher and things are running smooth!
We have our bumps here and there but I am able to deal with these small issues, and I am glad to report that this is my calling. I know it now.
I’d like to share some images of our projects and awards! I do have permission to post them 🙂