Classroom and Behaviour Management: Routine

Hello!  Another newsletter to celebrate my completing two project papers on time, hehe!

Routine—We are all creatures of habit.  Whether we realize it or not, we live by routines of some sort.  Children not only live on routine, they thrive on it.  Familiarity breeds confidence and confidence breeds manageability (yes, that really is a word… I checked! ;) )  During my attachment at the centre, I noticed how even in the small things like handwashing, they follow a routine:  everyone makes a line, teacher chooses a song, and the line proceeds down the hallway to the wash area.

At the sinks, children rub their hands together, get soap, rub hands again, wash the soap away, pull one sheet of paper towel (some more than one!) to dry their hands, and proceed to line up again.  Yeah, it all makes sense and should go without saying, I know!  But it’s remarkable in that I observed almost every child following this exact routine, the steps all in the same order each time.  It was orderly, though with the expected amount of noise expected of three-year-olds.

At least, it is orderly compared to the other scenario: teacher opens the classroom door, and the children charge down the hall tripping and falling over each other.  In the wash area, children stand at the sink playing heedlessly with water and soap.  Some children don’t get to wash their hands while others washed their shirts, faces and hair along with their hands.  The teacher has to yell to get the class together and back out of the wash area.

So routine does work.  Children somehow behave better when they are familiar with the proceedings of the hour! :) Of course, routine is not something you can stir up in an hour.  It takes weeks of consistency and buckets of patience… but it works beautifully!  Here’s just a little tip:  take the time to plan well.  The routine you establish is going to translate into habits for your children… and you don’t want to have to undo habits you established yourself!!

Thank you for reading!  Any tips for classroom management to share?

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2 thoughts on “Classroom and Behaviour Management: Routine

  1. Hurray on project completion!

    I am also learning on the job that routine really is a wonderful thing! I guess the only possible negative of daily routine, is when you have to get out of it, for example on a family holiday (child’s meal times, nap time and toileting will change).

    That is when routine can bite parents in the bum!

    Since it’s the school hols, I hope you get some time off to relax :)

  2. Hehehe, thank you! Had a week off last week, and it’s back to school for me now. It was a good break, though!

    Ooh, and what you said about breaking routine is true! Sometimes it even affects us adults! ;)

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