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I am a high school English teacher in an urban high school in Oklahoma City. I am a member of the American Federation of Teachers, Local 2309. I am a Democrat, a union activist and a worker for social justice. I also am a Christian (Congregationalist). I play chess and coach our school chess team.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

My Biggest Classroom Management Problem

The biggest problem I have as a teacher is that my students continually carry on "sidebar" conversations during class time. This means that I am constantly interrupting my lesson to get the students refocused on the task at hand.

I have used all the classroom management methods I have been taught, but nothing seems to work all that well. This includes calling parents to let them know what their children are doing. The parents are very sympathetic and promise to do all they can to deal with their children, but the students' behavior is seldom altered that much.

So what's a teacher to do when classroom conversation makes it nearly impossible to carry on teaching and learning.

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