Strong classroom management skills are a must in special education. Many times our students have deeply rooted behaviors that need to be addressed. Here are 2 classroom management tools that can help you keep students on track without adding in verbal prompts.
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Why use tools instead of prompts
Prompts are supports or cues that we add in to help students be more successful. Problems arise when we don’t properly fade the prompt and students become dependent on them. So if we want to help students without making them dependent on our help, we need to always be thinking of ways to fade prompts and supports.
Read more about prompting:
Tools To Adjust the environment
Tools can help us better control the environment as we are working to help students be more successful and independent. A tool can be a cue or support for staff, students or everyone. A wireless doorbell and timers are my favorite classroom management tools because they take very little effort, no prep and can be used in multiple ways.
Timers for classroom management
Timers are super versatile because they come in a variety of colors, shapes and styles. They can also be used in many different ways. Here are some of my favorite ways to use timers:
- Beat the clock- students have to finish a set of tasks before the timer goes off.
- Signal that something is finished without adding a verbal cue.
- Time length
- Visual timers help preset students
- Keep staff on schedule
- Help transitions
My favorite timers are from Time Timer. The visual timer with whiteboard is my favorite. I can easily use in multiple ways in the classroom or when I teach from home.
Wireless doorbells for classroom management
Using the doorbell chime has helped keep my students on task the entire time because there aren’t any other distractions.
I find that the use of audio cues are easy to use and fade, so they make the ideal classroom management tool. You can even use them with staff! An easy way to keep your classroom positive and encourage staff to giving students a lot of positive reinforcement is to randomly ring the doorbell. When staff hear the bell, they have to praise or reinforce a nearby student.