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    By teacher_queen

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    I also had a very, very, very talkative bunch this year. I can kind of handle talking, but they almost screamed at each other, even when they were right across the table from each other! I think part of their loudness was due to my loudness. It was my first year teaching and I didn't have the experience to know all the god tricks to get them to quiet down. I tended to use my voice to quiet them down and that did NOT work! They just got louder. I tried the Give me Five Harry Wong thing, but the kids just didn't respond well to that. I plan on changing things this year. I was told by my principal and mentor teacher that I was too nice. Normally, that is a great quality to have. As the year went on, I realized that quality doesn't fit well in the classroom. Unfortunatley, my kids knew which buttons to push, and I struggled to gain their respect. I am going to start out tougher this year. I can always slack off some if I need to, but I cannot build back up. We attended an in-service at the end of May by Jonas Basom, author of the Drama Game File. I really did not want to go, because that title of the PD had drama in it and I am not into drama at all and certainly don't have time to teach it. Well, I got dragged into going, and was so glad that I went. If you ever have a chance to hear him speak or use his product, you will be thrilled. Anyway, I learned so much about classroom management from him. He uses themes of drama all throughout, but you do not have to know anything about drama to use it. One technique he used was shaking a tamborine. His students knew that whenever they heard the tamborine shake, they had to stop and get quiet right away. I can't wait to buy myself a tamborine and use it this year. I think it will be a wonderful tool whether I have a quiet or loud class. I think starting out with a much bigger emphasis on procedures from the first day will make a world of difference. If you get a chance, check out Jonas' site at

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