5 Classroom Management Tips for Middle School Math Teachers

Managing a class of middle school students can be challenging. You only have so much time in your class period to teach your students all that the state wants you to teach them, but you also have to handle the administrative tasks like grade calculations, classwork, answering questions, and tracking attendance. 

Overall, you’re facing struggles keeping up with everything that is asked of you that a missing worksheet from your class binder can be the make or break point of your entire day. 

There are a few tips you can try to maximize how much time your pupils are actively learning while in your class and reduce the burden of the administrative work. Let’s take a look:

1. Learn To “Cheat”

At the beginning of a given school year or term period, ensure that you put the time in to learn your student’s names. Keep your seating chart in front of you on day one and address students by name for the first few days. Not only does this help you memorize names faster, but it will also impress your students. They’ll realize they cannot get away with fooling around since you know everything. 

They don’t know that you have your handy seating chart right by you to keep track of names and help you out before your memorization kicks in. 

2. Double Task 

You can also improve your classroom behavior by giving a warm-up problem right at the beginning of class. Doing this not only encourages students to get in the habit of starting on math-related content right away, but it gives you a few precious moments to complete attendance and to check over some homework assignments. 

Another way you can get two things done at the same time is during tests. One way to encourage active class participation is to check whether your students are taking notes throughout the course. 

However, checking whether notes have been completed can cost you valuable time and can make your student go a night without their notebook. This is counterintuitive to what notebooks should be used for, so how do you best grade this sort of assignment? 

One thing you can do is ask students to leave their notebook closed at the front of the room at the beginning of a test or quiz. Not only does this prevent students from trying to take a peek at their notebook during a test, but it lets you check it over while the pupils are working. When they turn their test in, you can hand back their graded notes. 

3. Allow Retakes

Your students will never be perfect, but allowing them to improve on past mistakes is a fantastic way to get students to feel motivated and inspired to take on challenges. 

You can decide how you want to offer retakes and do-over assignments. Do you simply want students to do a new version of the test and allow full marks? Or, do you want to enable students to finish homework that was left unfinished for partial credit? 

You can try to have students provide written explanations for the mistakes they made and provide work showing a correct solution to the problem they got wrong. Maybe by doing this, students can earn back so many points lost. 

These choices are ultimately up to you as the teacher. While this method seems uncommon, it’s one of the best ways to get your students to feel motivated and inspired to take on challenges and correct their mistakes. 

4. Use Consequences Sparingly 

While you want an orderly classroom, dishing out punishments nonstop will only make your students disrespect you. Suppose your solution to a student missing a test automatically gives that student a zero. In that case, they have no motivation to perform for the rest of the semester because they already feel like they have failed. 

Instead, begin with fairly negligible consequences that you can give out. If this doesn’t work, continue to escalate the consequences. By doing so, your students will never feel like you’re only there to make them fail. 

5. Provide Resources 

While making your worksheets and test preparation materials can be tricky, having worksheets on hand to evaluate how your students progress toward essential mathematics skills is crucial. If students can see that they’re meeting goals, they will feel motivated to continue trying (and behaving) in class. 

But, you may not have any time to make worksheets. 

That’s where we come in. 

At De Alba Math Center, we provide tools for teachers to prepare their classes for examinations in the online classroom or in person. 

Our solutions allow access through Microsoft Teams, Summit Learning, and Google Classroom, where students can access our instructional videos and print De Alba Math-handouts and foldable. We also provide printed resources like workbooks for students to use as consumables.

Contact us today and find out how we can support your classroom learning experience, no matter where it takes you!


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