Lesson Plan : Creating a Safe Classroom Climate

Teacher Name:
 F. Watson
Grade:
 Grade 11-12

Topic:
 Starting the Semester: Classroom Climate
Content:
 What is classroom climate? Why is classroom climate important? Who is responsible for a safe climate? How can a safe classroom climate be established and maintained?
Goals:
 Teacher and students will negotiate the guidelines for creating and maintaining a classroom climate. Teacher and students will negotiate the results of not following those guidelines.
Objectives:
 Students will understand and value what it means to have a safe classroom climate. Students will promote behavior in themselves and in others that ensures a safe classroom climate. Students will have personal copies of the decided guidelines. Students will be part of creating posters for the classroom of those guidelines.
Materials:
 Large sheets for students to make posters with Markers for the posters Alphabet Sheets for safe climate contest (one per student) Copies of the Education Act (part for students & teacher)--either print or electronic Colored paper or patterned sheet for students' personal copy of guidelines (optional)
Introduction:
 ABC Classroom Challenge! Give each student an ABC sheet (or have them make their own). Challenge the class to come up with a word that begins with each letter of the alphabet that would be part of the classroom they would like to have. What would it look like? What do the people act like? Who gets to talk? Who gets to listen? After 10 minutes (or when students tire of the activity), share answers and see which ideas are replicated. If any disagreements arise, have students back up their word.
Development:
 Have a small discussion about why having a safe classroom climate is important. Ensure that different people are asked for their responses, and that a small number of students do not dominate the conversation. If any one question does not get a response, try "think-pair-share" or get every student to write down a response to ensure "thinking time". Questions to ask: 1. How do feelings tie into classroom safety? 2. What physical safety issues might be part of a class in our school? 3. How could being physically unsafe affect students emotionally? 4. If a classroom has a safe climate, how could it affect student's work? 5. How is a classroom like a place where people might work? Where? 6. Who's responsibility is it?* (After discussing this question, move students to next activity)
Practice:
 Part A: Responsibility Give/show students the Education Act concerning their rights and responsibilities. Inform students this is the law. Have students take turns reading that section. Pick out some of the highlights for teachers as well, and share those with the students. Remind students of the regulations in their student handbooks. (These likely haven't changed or will have already been discussed, so there is no need to bore students by reading these). Suggestion: Have students name off some of the regulations for the school. Conclusion: Both teachers and students are responsible for creating and maintaining a safe classroom climate. Part B: Guidelines for a Safe Classroom Climate Have students work in groups of 4 to determine the 3 most important things to making and keeping a safe classroom climate. Tell students to designate a recorder, a reporter, a time keeper, and a team focus person (keeps the group on track). Have each group share their lists after approx. 10 minutes. As a class decide if all rules can be summarized into 3 main ones. (E.g. respect yourself, respect others, respect your environment). Allow as much negotiation as possible between the students.
Accommodations:
 If there are any students who have severe difficulty writing, have them draw pictures of the guidelines instead of writing them in words. Provide these students (if any) with a typed copy after class. Since there is likely to be more than one class in a classroom, have each class make their top 3, then summarize as a teacher and have students volunteer to make the poster. Check that all classes agree with the final 3 regulations.
Checking For Understanding:
 Have each student write an index card reflection on the class by completing these two sentences: 1 thing I do well now that will help make and keep a safe classroom environment is... 1 thing I can improve on to help make and keep a safe classroom environment is...
Closure:
 Remind students that it is their right and responsibility to be part of a safe classroom.
Evaluation:
 Listen/read student responses to scenarios. Do the responses show understanding of the regulations? Do students show an interest and concern for their classroom climate? (Facial expressions, comments, trying to practice some of the ways to keep a safe classroom climate) ***As a teacher, am I prepared to address any actions that do not promote a safe classroom climate? A need for consistency is important.

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