Classroom Management – 10

One Has to Be Out of One’s Mind

One has to be out of one’s mind to acquire a language. Thinking about the language is a mind-based activity that goes against the research and isolates students from one another. Feeling the language in happy communication (no thinking – everyone focused on the message) creates strong bonds between everyone in the classroom.

On these bonds the language can travel, literally floating on air, between the individuals in the classroom. The feeling of community thus created in the classroom becomes our number one defense against classroom management problems and boredom.

Thus, we conclude that it is by the help and society of others that we actually acquire the language, and not just by thinking about it how to build sentences.

We cannot stress the point enough – not only do children need to understand what they are hearing, they also have to be interested in it. Otherwise, they just will not listen. It’s not just that they have to understand the meaning of what is being talked about – they also have to want to know what happens. That’s not an opinion, it’s the research.

Thus, any teacher who is at this time just beginning to start peeling back the layers of the comprehensible input onion will do well to keep in mind that in this work of teaching languages that if a child doesn’t want to be in the classroom then they won’t learn anything.

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2 thoughts on “Classroom Management – 10”

  1. I had to laugh when I read the headline of this section. But then it clicked how that is precisely the direction I need to go in, more and more with each day: to a place where I am “out of my mind”.

    Regarding your point that children have to be interested in what they are hearing in order to listen, yes: so important but as obvious as it is, frequently looked over. The strategy for getting there -as you have emphasized – is making it about them. And now I understand the extreme importance of building a community of belonging in the classroom before all else: without it, this strategy falls short: you cannot make it about them. But only a part of them. And a Catch 22 situation, spiraling downwards, ensues.

  2. You are wise, John. What you say is true, esp. this: …children have to be interested in what they are hearing in order to listen, yes: so important but as obvious as it is, frequently looked over….

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