Updated: Oct 26, 2022
During this episode of the edumagic podcast, I interview Dr. Kris McGee.
Kris is an Associate Professor of Literacy at Frostburg State University, a self-proclaimed book nerd, tech junkie, and Co-Founder of #BookYourself. Dr. McGee and I met over Twitter one day and haven't stopped connecting since! This interview was our third time chatting together! She has a passion for teaching future teachers all about classroom management and has a love for literacy in the classroom.
Kris shares her love for reading and how the #bookyourself challenge started. It began by sharing with people you have permission to sit and read. We challenge you to read for 21 days, and let's share what we are learning and doing using #bookyourself. It was an amazing experience for the participants. There will be another chat launching on Feb 29!
Kris shares her journey into teaching. First, she started as an elementary teacher. She has taught every grade from Kindergarten through fifth grade! She was also an adjunct for Frostburg, which rolled into her current position. She brought her little learners into her current role as associate professor of literacy. Her world is preservice teachers, and she coordinates the master's program in teaching.
Kris' classroom management strategies
Classroom management is a large topic, but Kris shares her five go-to classroom management strategies. These five techniques can help you think through strategies to support young learners in the classroom. Let's jump right in.
1. Relationships are foundational
You can't build anything if you don't have a relationship with every child.
Get to know your students and their families
Invest in the time to get to know your class.
Feel a community and connection
2. Management systems
Less is more
Use sticks with numbers - match numbers to their materials
Have a classroom manager and assistant manager
Brag tags - students get to choose what they want to hang on their brag tag for that week to share
Let students get involved in rule creation and display the rules in the classroom
Class cash (bonus episode coming soon)
3. Clear expectations
Say what you mean and mean what you say
Y chart - What does it look like, sound like, and feel like when you go to different places in the school? Shows clear expectations for each place.
Hidden rules at home and school - adjust to new environments.
Set students up for success and model those expectations
It's ok to reset and remind ourselves of the expectations
4. We are all human
It is OK to be human - but you need to own up to the way you reacted
Don't take away from what you were upset about, but how you handled it.
Share your joys too!
Let students see that you are a full person, too - share about your family and pets.
5. Let it go!
Channel your inner Elsa and let it go if something isn't working right
Maybe a strategy is not jivin' with your students or with your style, and that is OK
You need to make your classroom a safe space for your classroom.
Feel blessed where you are.
This is your journey don't feel like you have to do what everyone else is doing!
Connect with Kris
“The secret of education lies in respecting the student." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Be present at the moment
Twitter Dr. Kris McGee
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