Procedures and Routines

“What are we doing today?”
“When’s lunch?”
“Where should I put this paper?”

Do your students ever ask these types of questions? Do these questions ever wear you down or cause you to feel annoyed? If they do, you’re not alone. Often teachers are frustrated with students’ repetitive questions regarding classroom procedures.

Students ask these types of questions when the classroom environment lacks consistency, predictability, and structure. Students ask these types of questions when classroom procedures and routines have not been established. Most students like knowing such things as where will I sit and what am I supposed to do when I enter the room, where will I find the materials and information I need to be independent and successful. This is difficult for some teachers to understand because they personally feel comfortable working in a less structured atmosphere. While some may function fine in this type of environment, it is essential to understand that this type of atmosphere causes many people to feel insecure and confused.

Because of this, it is imperative to create a more efficient classroom where students feel safe and secure and know what to do. An efficient classroom has procedures and routines that have been taught, modeled, and practiced until they have become second nature.

Here is a partial list of procedures that we believe should already be established in the first month of your classroom:
  • What to do when students enter the classroom at the beginning of the day or hour
  • Where and how do students turn in their work
  • What should students do after being absent
  • How should students ask questions
  • Where the materials are located that students might need
  • When are students allowed to move about the classroom
  • Student procedures for use of pencil sharpener or accessing the bathroom

Once these and other procedures are habits, the teacher is allowed more time for teaching and the students will have more time for learning.


October 2, 2010. Uncategorized.

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