The main problem I was having was that the students either couldn’t remember the classroom rules or just chose not to follow them. I only have 3 rules in my classroom, but overall, my classes were not following them and it make art class a miserable experience for everyone.
These are my rules:
- Be Ready! Come in quietly and sit. Stop when the teacher says, “I need your attention”
- Be Respectful! Don’t talk when the teacher is talking. Raise your hand.
- Be Neat! Listen to cleanup directions. Follow all directions during cleanup.
It really made a big difference. There was a lot less yelling, less disrespect, and it cut down on interruptions. For one of the classes, once the students demonstrated that they remembered the rules pretty quickly, so they no longer had to read them. They really liked that. Another class, however, had to read the rules every day until the last day of school. When the next school year started, we went over the rules and expectations on the first day. I asked them if they wanted to read the rules every day like they did last year, and they said, “No!” I reminded them that as long as they demonstrated that they knew the rules they wouldn’t have to read them. That was a few years ago, and they haven’t had to read the rules again.