When the right classroom management tools are in place, students are able to learn more as their engagement increases.

Focusing on physical classroom management, behavioral management, resources for effective instruction, attendance and gradebook tools, and tools for a school-home connection can help students master classroom lessons.

During an edWeb webinar, Eileen Lennon, a technology teacher at Nathaniel Hawthorne Middle School 74 in Queens, New York led an exploration of tools to help teachers establish an engaging and productive classroom environment.

Topics included:

  • Class behavior sites for every age group, from ClassDojo to ClassCraft to Google Classroom tools that measure classroom sound levels
  • Timers for students to monitor their time management
  • Random student selectors and random group creators to help students feel they are treated equally and fairly
  • Online discussions or group collaboration to increase student engagement
  • Badges as a method of classroom management

Next page: Resources to boost student learning

Managing the physical classroom

  • Seating charts
  • Timers  – “This helps get kids used to being able to manage their time,” Lennon said.
  • Noise levels  – “Balls bounce up and down the louder it gets in the room, which might encourage students to make more noise to watch things–I sometimes have to turn it off. But that you can look at the screen and see what the noise level is, is a good thing for the teacher to see and the student to see,” she said.

Behavior management

  • Class Dojo – This tool focuses on both positive and negative behavior, instead of only penalizing students for poor behavior.
  • Edmodo – “The best part of Edmodo is that you can give people badges,” Lennon said. “You can shower your children with badges. This is a good, simple interface with students and parents.”
  • Classcraft – Classcraft is similar to Class Dojo, but is aimed at older students and is set up as an avatar-driven world. Students create their avatars and also create teams and gain or lose points, and the entire team will gain or lose points depending on behavior.
  • Google Classroom offers a way to keep track of all student-teacher communications. In terms of behavior management, teachers can send messages directly to students as a more private means to address behavioral concerns.

Resources for effective instruction

Attendance and gradebook

Home connections

About the Author:

Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. When she isn't wrangling her two children, Laura enjoys running, photography, home improvement, and rooting for the Terps. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura http://twitter.com/eSN_Laura