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This Edition: Building Class Culture | Four Tips for Surviving December | Encouraging Appreciation

Create a positive class culture and give students voice with social skills goals.
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You can survive and even thrive with these four tips to get you through the season!
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Discover one strategy to help you encourage students to appreciate their fellow classmates.
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How can I get my kids to talk? The biggest challenge I have in my classroom is getting students to participate in the academic discourse of algebra. Working cooperatively is a social skill that’s often difficult to teach, and sometimes even more difficult to manage. I’ve had students who might refuse to participate in cooperative work. Some students might work ahead, leaving a few of their peers behind. Although collaboration is difficult to teach, it is a skill that must be taught explicitly in the classroom. Knowing this, I always start my year by modeling for my students how to effectively cooperate and communicate with peers in a positive way. This helps me build a positive classroom climate at the start the year, so I can more easily maintain this culture all year long.

This week, check out how David Olio teaches students to encourage and appreciate each other. When students feel safe and their voices are heard, they are more likely to be motivated to participate in rich dialogues. Similarly, Meredith Sweeney and Shannon Kay present strategies that not only promote positive class culture, but also serve to alleviate many management issues in the classroom. So, if you’re looking for your class to have rich conversations, I encourage you to incorporate some of these strategies in your lessons — definitely worked for me!

Crystal MoreyCrystal Morey
Josh Kwon
Teacher Laureate at Teaching Channel
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Learn how you can recognize and respond to the interpersonal dynamics that play out in your teacher teams and PLCs to achieve more respectful, high-quality interactions.

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Watch students engage with the organization Citizens Committee for New York City to actively improve their school community in the Bronx.

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