Effective classroom management is essential for creating a positive and productive learning environment where students feel safe, engaged, and motivated to learn.


As a teacher, implementing strong classroom management strategies not only helps maintain order and minimise disruptions but also helps create a supportive atmosphere conducive to student growth and success. 


In this article, we’ll explore some practical classroom management strategies that teachers can use to establish routines, build relationships, and promote positive behaviour in their classrooms.


Try these effective classroom management strategies with your students to become a happier, more effective teacher. 

Establish Clear Expectations


One of the foundational elements of effective classroom management is establishing clear expectations for behaviour and academic performance. Communicate your expectations to students at the beginning of the school year, outlining specific guidelines for participation, respect, and responsibility.


Clear and concise language should be used to ensure that expectations are easily understood by all students. Also discuss why certain behaviours or actions are expected. This helps students understand the purpose and importance of following the rules.


Consider co-creating classroom rules with your students to ensure they feel ownership over the expectations and understand the reason behind them. Reinforce these expectations consistently and model the behaviours you want to see in your students.


Clear expectations provide students with guidance on appropriate behaviour, both academically and socially. When students understand what is expected of them, they are more likely to follow classroom rules and norms, leading to a more orderly learning environment.

Model Ideal Behaviour


In addition to establishing clear expectations, teachers can model behaviours they want to see from their students. Studies show that modelling effectively teaches students how to act in different situations.


In the classroom, be sure to: 

  • Use polite language 
  • Maintain eye contact 
  • Keep phones in your pockets 
  • Let others speak uninterrupted 
  • Raise concerns in a respectful manner 


Teachers serve as role models for their students, and by modelling ideal behaviour, they set clear expectations for how students should behave and interact in the classroom. When teachers demonstrate respect, kindness, and professionalism, they establish a positive tone and culture that encourages similar behaviour from students. 

Establish Routines and Procedures


Consistent routines and procedures help create a sense of structure and predictability in the classroom, which is especially important for students with diverse learning needs. Establish routines for transitions, beginning and ending class, handing in assignments, and accessing materials. Teach these routines explicitly and provide opportunities for practice until they become automatic. Consistency in routines helps minimise disruptions and allows more time for learning.


Consistent routines and procedures create a sense of stability and security for students. Knowing what to expect and having clear guidelines for behaviour helps students feel safe and confident in their classroom environment. This sense of security is essential for promoting a positive learning mindset and reducing anxiety or stress. Routines and procedures also empower students to take ownership of their learning and become more independent learners.

Build Positive Relationships


Building positive relationships with your students is key to effective classroom management. Take the time to get to know your students as individuals, show interest in their interests, and demonstrate empathy and understanding.


By creating a supportive and caring classroom community, you’ll create a sense of belonging and trust among your students, which can lead to improved behaviour and academic outcomes.


Students are more likely to follow classroom rules and guidelines when they feel valued, understood, and respected by their teacher. Positive relationships create a supportive classroom environment where students feel safe to take risks, ask questions, and express themselves freely.


Read more about how to build positive relationships with your students

Reward Positive Behaviour


Positive behaviour management techniques focus on reinforcing desired behaviours rather than punishing undesirable ones. Incorporate strategies such as encouragement and rewards to reinforce positive behaviour and motivate students to make good choices. Consider praising students for jobs well done. Doing so can improve their behavioural performance, according to a recent research study.


Consider implementing a system of incentives or rewards, such as a class-wide reward system, to recognise and celebrate students’ accomplishments. Be consistent in your implementation of positive reinforcement and avoid using punishment or negative consequences as the primary means of behaviour management.


When it is sincere and references specific examples of effort or accomplishment, praise can inspire the class, improve a student’s self-esteem and reinforce rules and values you want to see. Most importantly it also encourages students to repeat positive behaviour. For example, praising a student on their progress with maths will encourage them to keep up the hard work.

Address Behaviour Proactively


Addressing behaviour proactively helps prevent disruptions from escalating into larger issues. By anticipating potential challenges and addressing them, teachers can avoid disruptive behaviours from happening in the first place. Keep an eye out for early signs of disengagement or frustration and intervene promptly to redirect students’ behaviour.


Use non-verbal cues, proximity control, and subtle prompts to manage behaviour discreetly without disrupting the flow of instruction. Incorporate strategies for de-escalating conflict and managing emotions, such as teaching deep breathing exercises or providing a calm-down corner where students can take a break when needed.


Instead of waiting for misbehaviour to occur and then responding reactively, teachers can proactively teach students the expected behaviours and provide opportunities for practice and reinforcement. This proactive approach helps students internalise the expectations and understand the reason behind them, leading to more consistent adherence to classroom rules and norms.

Seek Professional Development and Support


Continuous professional development (CPD) is essential for improving classroom management skills and staying up-to-date on effective practices. Education is a dynamic field, with new research, techniques, and technologies constantly emerging. CPD provides teachers with opportunities to stay updated on the latest best practices and evidence-based strategies for effective classroom management.


Seek out opportunities for training, workshops, and conferences focused on classroom management strategies and behaviour intervention techniques. Collaborate with colleagues, mentors, and support staff to share ideas, seek advice, and troubleshoot challenging situations. Don’t hesitate to reach out for support from your school’s administration, counsellors, or behaviour specialists if you need assistance with managing difficult behaviours or implementing interventions.


Are you looking to upskill? Take a look at our free CPD courses and training opportunities by clicking below.


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Effective classroom management is a foundational aspect of successful teaching and learning. By establishing clear expectations, building positive relationships with students, using positive behaviour management techniques and addressing behaviour proactively, teachers can create a positive and supportive learning environment where all students can thrive.


Implementing these strategies consistently and with care will contribute to a more engaging, productive, and harmonious classroom experience for both teachers and students. 


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