Researchers from Tel Aviv University have found that routines help reduce anxiety and give individuals more control over their lives. Students can greatly benefit from routine. It may help them to become better decision-makers, control stress, and teach them valuable life skills.
From special education directors to school counselors and beyond, understanding the value of routine in the classroom is the first step to creating better learning environments.
Here’s why classroom procedures and routines are a crucial part of any student’s life, and how to use them.
Students Feel More Relaxed
Exposure to high levels of stress can put people at higher risk of heart disease. It also has other negative impacts on the body, especially when someone is dealing with chronic stress.
Children in the classroom are frequently forced to deal with new obstacles they may find stressful. These situations can cause anxiety.
Of course, every student and their needs are different. Some may feel more uncomfortable performing everyday activities such as engaging in class discussions or interacting with their peers. The key to helping everyone in the classroom feel more comfortable is to establish a routine.
For instance, teachers might greet students at the door or as they enter the room each morning. This simple act can make many kids feel more welcome in the space.
It’s also less stressful when children know what’s expected of them and what they must do each day. Younger kids should know to hang up their coats and backpacks and take a seat before the beginning of the class.
Daily Routines Create Order
Classroom management isn’t an easy task. Yet, proper procedures are vital if you want to foster a learning environment.
Without proper classroom management, students may talk out of turn or engage in disruptive behavior. This may make it difficult for other kids to listen and learn.
We offer more than 60 hours of K12 behavior management training workshops. Our workshops help create a more positive environment for instructors, school staff, and students.
Additionally, creating daily routines will establish more order in the classroom. It creates a mental “to-do” list and rules for children to follow.
One good habit to teach young kids is how to form a line. This is a skill they’ll need countless times as adults, and it also creates order in the classroom.
Teaching children to raise their hands or perform a similar action when they have questions or comments is an easy and effective way to foster discussion and engagement.
It’s an Opportunity for Positive Reinforcement
Discipline is a tricky subject for teachers and school staff. Certain techniques don’t work while others are now considered antiquated or even harmful.
One technique that does show results is positive reinforcement. It focuses on shaping behavior by looking at the positive and viewing mistakes as learning opportunities.
Practicing positive enforcement motivates kids to act a certain way. It can encourage them to aim for specific goals. Praise, gold stars, and offering small rewards are all examples of rewards in positive enforcement.
Understanding actions by studying behavior is the best way to improve our learning environments.
Another useful type of therapy is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). It is often used to help children with a spectrum disorder like autism. School counselors or psychologists may offer this therapy to help kids improve social abilities, reduce negative behaviors, teach them maintenance behaviors, etc.
Students that participate in this type of therapy learn behaviors and skills they can bring to other environments.
It Keeps the Classroom Clean
Implementing classroom procedures and routines keeps the learning environment clean and safe. Students know where to find supplies, such as markers or glue sticks, and where to put them at the end of an activity.
Creating organized storage solutions with clear labels helps children to find what they need. It also gives them a chance to show their independence and reliability in the classroom. Knowing how to store everything when class is over teaches them valuable life skills.
Of course, this also benefits educators. It keeps learning spaces clean and free of clutter. Plus, it can make a safer environment by limiting clutter that might become a tripping hazard.
Can Be Applied to Virtual Classrooms
The rise in virtual learning has had mixed reactions from instructors. However, you can apply rules and procedures in an online learning space as well, which helps to create order.
For instance, students should know to show up for class on time and sit quietly until the teacher begins. Giving kids a task list and being clear about expectations also goes a long way in making online learning more effective.
While a virtual space doesn’t feel exactly the same as a classroom, it should still feel like a place where kids are meant to learn. They should respect their teachers, follow rules, and do their best to engage with the material and their peers.
Teachers might create a detailed syllabus that includes what kids will be studying each week and how they must prepare. It should cover assignments, tests, due dates, and how specific tasks will affect a child’s grade.
Establishing and enforcing routines virtually might be even more important these days. Kids might feel disconnected from their studies when they’re not in a traditional learning environment.
There are likely many distractions at home that can affect their ability to focus. They might also feel as if it’s okay to slack off since they aren’t in a classroom.
Instructors should maintain many of the same routines or create similar ones to keep children on track and engaged.
The Importance of Classroom Procedures and Routines
Creating classroom procedures and routines helps students to feel comfortable and focused. Having daily routines can reduce stress, and also teach kids valuable skills.
Not sure where to start? We can help. Here at Insights to Behavior, we offer solutions and workshops for counselors, special education directors, interventionists, and other professionals.
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