We all have those experience:
We try to build up a classroom with a positive climate.
We build up relationships, in sitting with out students at the table as they do their work and joining in the children’s activity.
We try to build up positive emotions, so that every child can get excitedly the teacher’s attention and we as the teacher respond with enthusiasm.
We try to build up a culture of positive communication, by communication positively with the children about their sharing by clearly telling them they are doing a nice job.
We based our class activities on a respectful behaviour with using warm and calm voice, with using the children’s first names and with implementing an atmosphere that children share material with one another.
Yes and yes and yes we do all that, but still there are children we feel that we can’t connect, we feel that whatever we offer those children are general on another level, in another world, what ever we try to engage those children in the classroom it seems that they are still outside of the group or that they are permanently disturbing all activities and offers.
Its desperate. We start to develop already an aversion against those children and worse we start to not like this particular group, class and our days are starting with horrible feelings when we have to face those children. But we can’t recognise that in that moment the problems getting bigger and bigger like a spiral that pulls us all down.
Its time to stop that immediately and change in general your position and methodology. The is one brilliant methodology existing to build up a positive relationship with that explicit child and with that taking everyone out of that unpleasant spiral.
Banking time planning basics:
You always work with one child at a time – typically for about 8 weeks. Each session will last about 10-15 minutes. Sessions will take place 2-3 times per week periodically and planned scheduled.
Which child should I choose:
The goal of Banking Time is to strengthen the teacher-child relationship. So….. – choose a child with whom your relationship has been challenging or strained. - choose a child who has a hard time managing his or her behaviour in the classroom.
Note: If you have multiple children who you’d like to choose, choose the most challenging first. Later, you can move on to the other children in your classroom.
Introduce Banking Time to the child:
After you choose a child, have a conversation with him or her. Explain that you are concerned about how you and the child are getting along. Emphasis that you want to get to know the child better. Tell children that the session is:
- going to happen on certain days and at certain times. – not based on the child’s behaviour (not a reward or punishment) - different from the normal classroom time because it will be just the two of you
Remember: Respect the child’s opinions & views while encouraging open communication about upcoming Banking Time sessions.
When will sessions happen:
Keep the following in mind as you schedule Banking Time sessions:
- Banking Time sessions are 10-15 minutes and occur 2-3 times per week.
- Session times are regular, predictable and relatively free of distraction.
- Sessions are not during a child’s favourite activities (such as outside time). The child shouldn’t feel that they’re missing out on something to have a Banking Time session.
Where does Banking Time happen:
When scheduling Benking Time sessions, you’ll want to plan for the location as well. Possible locations for Banking Time include:
- a quiet hallway
- the library
- an available office
- a silence corner of the classroom
Banking Time activities and materials:
Wou’ll also want to plan your activities & materials. Banking Time activities & materials are:
- age-appropriate, suitable for the specific child and encourage exploration
- high-interest, open-ended activities without stereotypes
- possibly in a bin or box of toys different from those used day-to-day in the classroom
- used in any way the child chooses (with safe limits)
Activities & materials recommendation:
- pretend play (with dollhouse, figurines, in the dramatic play centre etc.)
- playing with blocks or legos board or card games based greatly on chance (e.g. candy land, chutes and ladders, go fish)
- activities that allow for you and the child to play together in a joint activity
- creative art activities that include painting, gluing, cutting etc.
- reading a book to a child
- activities and games that focus greatly on skill (this will depend on the individual child)
- activities that tend to require teacher guidance (this will depend on the individual child)
- computer games
- activities designed for solitary play
Notes about child behaviour:
There are a couple things to keep in mind about child behaviour during Banking Time. Behavioural standards may be different during Banking Time. Banking Time sessions are not contingent upon the child’s behaviour. Sessions should be scheduled in advance & carried out regardless of the child’s behaviour. Sessions are not used as a reward for good behaviour or taken away as a punishment for bad behaviour.
What to do about child misbehaviour:
- continue Banking Time
- Ignore mild inappropriate behaviour that is not disruptive during the session
- discuss the situation with the child afterwards if necessary
- conduct the next Banking Time session as planned
- end the session and discipline the child immediately
- ignore the inappropriate behaviour that is disruptive or aggressive
Transitioning from Banking Time:
Sometimes the child has difficulties transitioning into regular activities after Banking Time. It’s important to remember this when planing as well. You can help smooth the transition at the end of Banking Time by:
- giving warnings as the end of the session approaches
- using a timer or clock
- scheduling sessions right before the child’s favourite activity
- using some sort of special time chart to count how many Banking Time sessions you have completed.
Banking Time Techniques:
Banking Time is always decided in three main methodology tools.
If you follow this three tools also in the above designed order, you will be successful in building up a positive relationship during Banking Time sessions, which will pay out later in the classroom to everyone, you, the child and the classmates.
1. Observing: Observing means that you are carefully watching and taking mental notes of the child’s behaviour, words and feelings, as well as your own thoughts and feelings during each Banking Time sessions. Be patient and take the observation time serious. Don’t be afraid of the silence, just let the child guide the activity and lean back and observe actively.
2. Narrating: The observation is the basic of the next step the Narrating. Similar to observing, narrating does not include any teaching, directing, questioning or even positive reinforcement. There are three important tools that will help you when you are narrating:
c. sportscaster technique
a.narrating-refelction: Reflection is when you listen to the child and repeat them back in a slightly different way. For example, if the child said, “play-dough is my favourite”, you might say, “you really like play-dough.”
b. narrating-imitation: Imitation is a non-verbal narrating tool. When you imitate, you watch the child carefully and follow his or her lead. So if the child is starts stacking blocks, you start stacking blocks too.
c. narrating- sportscaster technique: Finally, the sportscaster technique is when you carefully watch the child and describe the actions you see, without any judgement. So if the child is organising counting bears by colour, you might say, “I see that you are putting all of the blue bears together and now you are putting all the green ones together.”
3. Labelling: Finally, the technique of labelling is when you communicate out loud what you notice about a child’s feelings and emotions. Labelling should be handled very carefully and considered. If you are labelling wrong it could cause disastrous consequences for your relationship between the child and you and in the end for the whole success of the Banking Time. So consider carefully and consider very deeply before labelling the child. Take your time before you are labelling and never label if you yourself are in an unstable and unsafe feeling yourself. A label is very difficult to change again, but if you are labelling carefully considered you will be very successful with your Banking Time.
Before you are starting to execute Banking Time with a chosen child, prepare yourself with a Banking Time sheet:
1. which child will you work with first for Banking Time? Why did you choose this child?
2. When and how will you communicate with this child about Banking Time and explain what you will be doing?
3. When will you be able to conduct your regular Banking Time sessions with this child? Which days of the week? What time of day?
4. Where will you do the Banking Time?
5. What is your plan to minimize potential distraction and allowyourself to focus on this child during the session?
6. What activities and materials will you have available for your Banking Time sessions?
7. What is your biggest concern about the beginning to implement Banking Time?
8. What are you most excited about as you get started with Banking Time?
And now good luck for a new start for a more positive climate in your classroom.
See also the following teaching methodology description: #89 Banking Time
One very often discussed topic, but most of the time the results are same: NO IMPLEMENTATION after the discussions.
Field trips, are they really effective or wasted educational time?
Preparation is essential
From my side as an educational scientist I have to say: Yes and Yes and Yes. Field-trips are the most effective educational implementation ever …… if:
1. all the subjects on this day are involved in the preparation and execution on that day
2. all the subject teachers are informed long enough about such a field trip to find cross connections to be able to point out such connections to the students in advance.
3. all involved teachers in such a trip are 100% prepared, a field trip need much more preparation than a “normal” lesson.
4. all involved teachers have an awareness about the amazing chance of such a field trip.
5. all involved teachers have an awareness of their high responsibility during the execution of such a field trip.
Field trip or shopping tour
But now I want to come to the problem of the reality, the real implementation of such field trips and from that side I have to say:
This time is the most wasted educational time.
Why I have to say such a strong sentence:
1. basic bad preparation and organization causing wasted waiting times and teachers are not prepared to fill this time with meaningful educational tasks. They simply don’t care.
2. teachers are not prepared at all and most of the time my observation of such field trips show that they have no awareness about the amazing chance of such a field trip.
3. teachers most of the time using that time like relaxing time for the teachers.
4. teachers most of the time have no awareness of their very high responsibility during such a field trip.
5. teachers think if they are giving students freedom to do what ever they like to do during such a trip, students would like that. This is the biggest mistake in the thinking of teachers, please find below one very interesting report from one of our students about exact such a field trip:
“Hi, my name is Yosefin and I’m 15 years old. I’m one of Globe’s students that joined the fieldtrip to Singapore. I like the plan for the fieldtrip going to Singapore and successfully, we did it. We were so exciting when we heard the school’s headmaster accepts the fieldtrip’s proposal. From the fieldtrip, we got new and further sight about what will we be able to do after high school. We learnt also how is the university’s student study and some of their lessons. It’s great that we could see immediately their practice lessons and their staffs were so kind. But in some ways, I got disappointed with two things. Firstly we should go to the national library, but we didn’t, we went to the public library and secondly, after that, we just spread and some of us were just shopping. I think school need to be more cooperate and help us to get something more in the field of education when we have a fieldtrip like that, than just wasting time and money for shopping. Also teachers who go with us must be stricter. I also think that school must be more care about the teacher who is on duty at the fieldtrip time, like, when they need help and support. Thank you and God bless you.”
I am so thankful for this report and it shows that mostly teachers underestimating their own students, a field trip is the greatest chance to implement theoretic absorbed knowledge for students, so please teachers take such trips serious, prepare it more than a lesson, start to develop an awareness how important such trips are for students, give them every guidance you can during such a trip, to make it effective and meaningful with educational outcome and background.
A field trip is not a shopping trip, and even if you plan it as a shopping tour, there are much more things during a shopping tour to discover, if you guide them correctly.
Most important things of a field trip are the preparation, structured organization and an effective meaningful execution, than a field trip is the most effective educational time ever, if its just a ‘relaxing and give students time to do what they like to be a loved teacher’-execution than its the most wasted educational time ever.
And please don’t always underestimate your own students, all what they want is:
NOT HAVING WASTED EDUCATIONAL TIME!
For your preparation of a professional executed field trip you can find help under this link: general field trip checklist
Bullying is a very important topic which is still underestimated by most of the teachers even-though there are lots of researches existing already about the very negative effects if a child get bullied until they are adults. Even some people report massive problems they have to face in the life as an adult which are based on the bullying in their childhood.
Nearly every class in elementary and secondary school has minimum once someone who get bullied. Nearly one in five students in an average classroom is experiencing bullying in some way. The rest of the students, called bystanders, are also affected by the bullying.
What is bullying:
Bullying may involve physical aggression such as fighting, shoving, or kicking; verbal aggression such as name calling; or more subtle acts such as socially isolating another child; done by an individual or by a group.
There are always three parts in the bullying system:
A bully can be an individual, or a group of people. A bully is usually a person who does not value or feel good within themselves (has low self-esteem) or has been a victim of violence themselves. Bullying is often a way of making themselves feel more powerful. Often bullying can become their way of dealing with their own problems. Bullies can also be motivated by jealousy, lack of knowledge, fear or misunderstanding.
The bullied Person:
Everyone can be a victim of bullying, but often it is reported that people with special needs or outstanding characters are easy victims for bullying. Bullied persons have to get friends and societies help to be able to understand that the bullying act is not their fault, they are absolutely correct and doesn’t have to change anything in their life.
Someone who sees or knows about bullying which is happening to someone else, is known as the bystander. The bystander plays a significant role in bullying. Bullying behavior is reinforced where people watch but do nothing. Try and be an active bystander and act according, step in and speak up.
Impact of bullying:
A single student who bullies can have a wide-ranging impact on the students they bully, students who observe bullying, and the overall climate of the school and community.
Students Who are Bullied:
Students deserve to feel safe at school. But when they experience bullying, these types of effects can last long into their future:
Observers of Bullying:
Students who see bullying happen also may feel that they are in an unsafe environment. Effects may include feeling:
Powerless to act
Guilty for not acting
Tempted to participate
Students Who Bully Others:
Students who intentionally bully others should be held accountable for their actions. Those who bully their peers are also more likely than those students who do not bully others to *:
Schools with Bullying Issues:
When bullying continues and a school does not take action, the entire school climate can be affected in the following ways:
The school develops an environment of fear and disrespect
Students have difficulty learning
Students feel insecure
Students dislike school
Students perceive that teachers and staff have little control and don’t care about them
What Can you Do?
If you do feel any of these things, it is important to remember that it is the result of someone else’s behavior, attitude or beliefs. It is not because of who you are. Dealing with these feelings can be hard and seeking help is one way to help you to overcome them. By identifying these feelings you may be able to find ways to get bullying to stop and get the feelings to stop.
Helping Out a Friend!
If you have a friend who is being bullied and you know they are going through a tough time ensure they have someone they can talk to. It’s important that they still feel supported. If you witness them being bullied, don’t be a bystander, you can make a difference.
Bullying is not simply ‘part of growing up’. It is a destructive issue that can have serious effects on a young person’s physical and mental health.
Just two weeks ago I entered a classroom by accident and I monitored a strange seating formation: All students table have been positioned on one side of the room, just one student sat beside far away from the rest of the class alone at the desk. After observing that strange seating formation, I asked the homeroom teacher for the special reason for that formation. The answer was: “No, the students arranged it themselves since a long time ago already.” I wondered about it and try to ask the lonely student some very careful questions and I didn’t have to ask deep about it, the student used the chance directly and opened the heart about the problem. Clear bullying. And this situation is ongoing already since 6 month. How come none of the involved teachers wondered about the danger of that situation, none cares. The bullying was to be seen straight away just by seeing the strange seating formation, but none cares.
Teachers should be the first one who care about a safe environment of students. Teachers have to develop a deep awareness of those bullying problems and the consequences not just for one individual. I am saying it again:
Bullying is not simply ‘part of growing up’. It is a destructive issue that can have serious effects on a young person’s physical and mental health and not just only on the bullied person, on the whole school society. Stop bullying. Develop an awareness of bullying situations and act immediately.
After two loyal years its the time to say thank you very much to all of our partners from all over the world. We received so much help in different fields, books, teaching material, ideas and motivation.
What is a good partnership about, is it always about money? I definitely say: No! Its about support in any field. Its about giving ideas, helping in finding good teaching resources, exchanging knowledge, supporting with books, exchanging students, exchanging teachers, trusting each other, teaching each other in differences of lifestyle, excepting cultural and traditional differences, learning how to deal with those differences in a global world, come closer together for a better understanding and last but not least motivate each other to overcome difficulties.
All those above mentioned and much more we received the last two years from our partners abroad and that for we want to say thank you.
We had amazing visits while the student exchange program with our Austrian friends from our partner school “HTBLA-Weiz”.
We received books and teaching material from the “Goethe Institute” in Amsterdam for our curricular German lessons.
We got a great support for our Elementary school English program from “Chatsworth international school” in Singapore.
We are grateful for all the class projects we could develop between our partner-school classes in England, Germany and Austria.
We are very happy about the large variety of experiences we could make while the teachers exchanges from Chile, Germany, Austria and Holland. Thanks for sharing not just only your experiences with us, thanks also for taking our advises and your willingness and openness to learn from us. Those times are for all of us a great enrichment, for students and teachers.
And last but not least thanks to Mr.Lothar you have been since the very beginning permanent a great motivator and with your voluntary yearly visits and seminars a great support for our teacher’s development.
Thanks again for everyone who is always supporting us and we hope we have been also for all of you an experience and we could be able to give some of our received support back to you. To all those who haven’t been mentioned above personally, your contribution is not at all less important for us.
All students, teachers and staff of Sekolah Globe National Plus, Batam Island, Indonesia.