This week I began a 3-part series that began with major categories of difficult students followed by preventative steps for managing those kinds of students. On the rare occasion it is needed, I still have a few tricks up my sleeve.
Image via Flickr by stevendepolo
I consider these tricks for dealing with difficult students a last resort. Because I am generally effective managing the classroom through preventative measures, I rarely have a need for these tactics. But do not doubt it, I have used each one of these at least once.
Two days ago I started this 3-part series by defining categories of difficult students. As I said in that piece, my classrooms rarely have any challenging students; my secret is stopping the behavior before it starts.
Another way to think about it is
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” — Benjamin Franklin
Adult students rarely (if ever) have a goal of being the most difficult in class. They become challenging as they start exhibiting certain behaviors, often unconsciously in response to a variety of circumstances. Classroom management for adults doesn’t have to be a challenge; by creating an environment from the beginning where those behaviors are not tolerated, they just don’t appear as often.
Adult educators have a unique challenge in working with their students. In some cases they have forgotten how to learn and in other scenarios they have forgotten how to behave! But one rotten apple doesn’t need to ruin the whole bunch.
Image via Flickr by Michael Bentley
In my class, How to Teach It, one of the most common questions I get is how to deal with difficult students. For most of us, difficult students are not common, but their rarity makes them much more challenging as we are often caught unprepared, without a plan of action. In this 3-part series we will look at categories of challenging students, “defensive” techniques to minimize occurrences and suggestions for managing them when they inevitably do show up in class.
I am a serious extrovert! Nobody is just one or the other, introvert or extrovert. But I am almost all extrovert and that can be super challenging when most of my world is introverted.
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Back before I left my corporate job, I had the opportunity to participate in a leadership seminar that included a full-fledged, get input from lots of people, answer a ton of questions, Myers-Briggs assessment. Most folks have some familiarity with the indicator tool and have often taken some abbreviated version. What I learned during my assessment was that versions given by trained professionals provide results that indicate the range or scale of each pair so it is possible to be nearly equally both – introvert AND extrovert. Not every person has to fall into the introvert vs. extrovert debate.