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Q: Discipline and punishments

I teach at a primary school in Chengdu, and I have come across some situations that make me seriously question China's education system, and how discipline, and punishments are handled. For instance. I have a Chinese English teacher friend, and she is the headmaster of a class. There is one student who gives her trouble all the time. Stealing things from students, Harassing other students, (Hitting, breaking their things, and more like this). And all the punishment she has tried to give him has failed, he simply doesn't care. His father was a thief, and is in prison for this, so there is obviously reasons for his behaviours. But there is nothing that the teachers, or the school can do about it. Last week she had a breakdown from stress, and told his grandmother that she wanted him to stay home for a week, and the grandmother threatened to take her to the education board. (The grandmother comes to the school to help take care of the troubled child.)

When I first came here I was very disturbed by how the teachers treat their students. That is, manipulating their emotions to elicit a desired response. But after lengthened exposure to the system, I have begun to understand that their manipulation is rooted in necessity as much as laziness. The teachers are given no power, and even their superiors aren't provided with proper tools to deal with children's bad behaviors. Most students can be dealt with through their parents, but when you get the case of a troubled child with dad problems, and a mother that doesn't care anymore, then it's left to the teacher to deal with it.

I used to think that it was terrible when a teacher would give their student a cuff across the head, or some small physical punishment. But in reality, I think the physical punishment has much less damaging affects than the psychological manipulation some teachers use.

I mostly teach two grade 6 classes, and one of them is about 80% boys, and discipline is somewhat of a problem in the class. I have fights break out regularly (On average one every other class). If the students aren't too involved with each other, when I yell or start walking towards them, they will break up, but often it doesn't matter what I say or do, and they will keep going at it until I pull them apart.

So, my question is, have you run into any similar problems in the classroom? Do you know any effective ways of disciplining students?

4 years 25 weeks ago in  Teaching & Learning - China

 
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Isn't this a book by Foucault.?

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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Cultivate an effective classroom management style.

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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Governor

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If you have one problem student, kick him out. Your school will whine and say that it is not allowed, but you are, at the end of the day, able to teach your class without his interference. It is not even a reward for bad behavior...I would not want to be him when the school disciplinarians find him. 

 

As for the other class--names on the board tends to work. As does having something exciting planned for the end of clSs(but only if they are good). 

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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Governor

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Sorry, guys, I double posted.

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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Emperor

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They must like you!angel

 

That's all you need to be effective in Primary classroom.

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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Isn't this a book by Foucault.?

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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CB - how long have you been in China? You've already picked up a few bits of Chinglish!

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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If you want to take charge of a class then you have to be the boss from the start. Don't smile for the first two weeks. It's easy to step forward and be a kids best bud but it's hard to step back and create distance. Familiarity breeds contempt. Give the kid a "code red". Punish the whole class for his stupidity, sooner or later one of the bigger kids will physically punish him for you. Shame, humiliation, peer pressure, and conformity are all valuable weapons in a teacher's behaviour management arsenal. Never forget that you are cooler, more intelligent and most importantly of all bigger (hopefully) than your troublesome students. Use proximal behaviour modification such as making him sit at a little baby chair in front of your desk or by surrounding him with girls. Be inventive.

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4 years 25 weeks ago
 
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1. Classroom management skills must be enacted by the teacher and adhered to
2. Respect and honor for the teacher must be gained by the students

3. Maintain a rewards/penalty system that the kids can get excited about

4. Keep your composure and do not show fear or reluctance

5. Move problem kids and low achievers to the middle of the classroom. They will begin to copy the behaviors of those around them.

6. Develop a penalty corner that allows them to lose face.

7. Pray to God...if you have a faith in one.

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4 years 24 weeks ago
 
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