Classroom rules are a must for a smooth running and happy classroom. Establishing classroom rules need to be set and understood from the first day back at school to set the tone for the rest of the school year. A way to encourage students to ensure that they follow the rules is to involve them in creating those rules!
Here's how to do it. Start with a list of what you consider the most important and necessary for a classroom, and then, through thoughtful discussion, work with your students to create a set of rules expressed in their language.
Here is an example of a starting list that you could use, adapt and expand it to meet the needs of your class and grade level:
As you go through creating and establishing the rules conduct a discussion about why each rule is important and how it impacts the rest of the class if a rule is broken. Once finalized, create a contract together and have each student write up the rules on the contract; each student is to sign their contract at the end. Keep the contracts filed together, so that if a rule is broken, there is the option to refer the student to their signed personal contract to point out that they breached it.
Some important tips to remember when creating the rules:
Point out and explain that rules help make everyone’s time in school more enjoyable; use examples to illustrate this point. An activity to reinforce this would be to split the students into groups and assign a particular rule to each. Each group must create a role play about a student breaking the rule and showing how it impacts others. Groups perform their rule role play in front of the class; whole class discussion post each performance about why the rule presented is important.
All the best for the new school year!
A 21st century School Teacher, Mother, and Wife.