But, you may be thinking, I’m not a manager, I’m an educator. At face value, this is true, but it seems that , according to many sources, educators are also managers. To elaborate, educators need to also be engaged in classroom management, a multi-strategy approach that “seeks to establish and sustain an orderly environment so that students can engage in meaningful academic learning” (Evertson & Weinstein, 2006, p. 4). Classroom management also “aims to enhance student social and moral growth” (Evertson & Weinstein, 2006, p 4). Some examples of classroom management strategies that educators undertake to create an effective learning environment for students to learn include:
- Develop caring, supportive relationships with and among students
- Promote and support the development of self-regulation in students
- Organize and implement instruction in ways that optimize students’ access to learning
- Model the behaviour you want to see in your students such as acting respectfully, showing empathy and caring, effective use of questions,…
- Treat adult students as adults
- Be creative and efficient
- Use appropriate interventions to assist students who are exhibiting unacceptable behaviour
So, although one may think of classroom management being essentially about managing disruptive behaviour, it is really about so much more.
Interestingly, educators with high emotional intelligence (EI) are more able to create effective teacher-student relations that in turn support student learning and engagement. They tend to be more caring and able to recognize students’ needs. In turn, students seem to recognize this and work harder for these instructors (Ramana, 2013). Interestingly, being attentive and receptive to student needs is thought to serve as a mediating factor in reducing misconduct in the learning environment! Along with these benefits, research findings also suggest that those with high EI also have more well developed coping mechanisms in place to manage stress and burnout. In this day and age of multi-tasking and balancing of work, home, and health, one can’t go wrong with learning more about EI!
Here’s a website that succinctly explains EI, associated benefits, and ideas of how to further develop EI. http://www.helpguide.org/articles/emotional-health/emotional-intelligence-eq.htm
So, if you’re considering choices for upcoming courses, think about those that assist you in further developing your emotional intelligence, which in turn will pay off in your work as a “manager”. Even though I believe that I have high EI, I will definitely be reading more on this topic. Being open and visible to learning as an educator, and learning more about how to be a very effective classroom manager are some of my top priorities for professional development!
For further reading, check out the article “Emotional intelligence and teacher effectiveness: An analysis in the Voice of Research journal. Here’s the link: : http://www.voiceofresearch.org/doc/Sep-2013/Sep-2013_5.pdf
Evertson, C.M. and Weinstein, C.S. (2006). Handbook of classroom management: Research, practice and contemporary issues. Lawrence Erlbaum Associated.
Ramana, T.V. (2013, September). Emotional intelligence and teacher effectiveness. Voice of Research. 2(2). Retrieved from: http://www.voiceofresearch.org/doc/Sep-2013/Sep-2013_5.pdf
Segal, J. and Smith, M. (2015, February). Emotional Intelligence: Key skills for raising emotional intelligence. HelpGuide.org. Retrieved from: http://www.helpguide.org/articles/emotional-health/emotional-intelligence-eq.htm