Classroom Games and Discipline - an Unhappy
TEFL teachers often do not have the class management training that
their primary school colleagues benefit from. Without preparation it
can be somewhat of a
shock to take on a classroom
of energetic children. This is further exacerbated when
teachers start to use ESL
classroom games, which can make the children quite
Here are some
tips and ideas to help you contain your pupils'
enthusiasm to a manageable level. You can use esl classroom
keep your pupils under control, but you need a few tricks!
Basic ground rules for the ESL classroom
tips are divided into:
1. Basic Ground Rules for the ESL
pupils define the classroom rules in the first lesson, and post them on
the classroom wall for reference. Knowing WHY a rule is in place makes
it easier to keep. You must establish the rules
on day one and stick to them!
consistent in applying your rules. If you are arbitrary about how you
your rewards or
'consequences', or punishments you will undermine
the rules themselves.
good behavior to generate love and self-esteem. Whatever you do, avoid
being like so many
parents who spend their whole time telling their children,
"don't do this", and "don't do that".By focusing on the
positive in order to draw more
attention to it you apply the universal law of "you attract
what you focus
If you are
working in a school know the law and rules of your
institution before you go into the classroom.
nothing so sweet as the sound of
one's own name. So
use an individual's
name for praise and avoid using it when ticking someone off.
teams and use peer pressure to encourage good behavior. Deduct or
reward behavior points to a
score during a game.
break your own
rules by raising your voice to be heard. Instead talk quietly
or stop and wait. Your pupils should know that for every minute you are
kept waiting they will receive extra
homework, or whatever consequence you have designated.
would ask a naughty student, "Do you want me to speak to your Dad?" By
asking them the question you give them the power to choose, whereas if
you threaten them with "I'll call your Dad if you don't behave", you
the initiative away and seem tyrannical.
is better than cure, so try giving
boisterous students an important task BEFORE they start to play up.
They may respond well to
things out quickly or use a system to have things handed out, such
as giving the well-behaved students the task as a reward. Sing a song
together or do
some counting to
occupy the class while materials are handed out. There are many other
things you can do but there is not the space to list them all here.
mystery game and, before you start your fun esl game say that during
the activity you will be
watching out for 3 well-behaved students who will be rewarded.
song the children know and love – they will all join in with
and at the end you’ll have their attention.
pattern which they
must clap back, or start a rhyme they know with actions.
cues such as heads down or lights
off. Vary these
with other fun quiet
cues such as "Give me five".1--on your
bottom, legs crossed; 2--hands folded in your lap; 3--face
the speaker; 4--eyes and ears open; 5--mouths closed.
teach this repeatedly in the first lessons and after a few weeks, you
to say "Give me five:1,2,3,4,5", and they do.
also use the Magic 1 2
3 idea. When a
child does not comply
start counting 1, 2,…The
that if you get to 3 there will be some sort of consequence, such as
out on the next game. If
you use this
and you reach 3, you must follow through with an appropriate
establish the rules and consequences for good and bad behavior, apply
them consistently, set a good example, use peer pressure and points,
attention grabbing cues such as favorite songs, rhymes with actions and
countdowns. You can
be firm and fun at
the same time, and if you cannot manage your class, you should realize
although it sounds harsh to say it, you are wasting their time.
THE AUTHOR: Shelley
Vernon promotes learning through fun esl games and encouragement.
Make your job easy and fun and receive the free games
now from esl
classroom games for children