My biggest struggle thus far in my student internship has been behavior management (an area in which I feel may people have difficulty). Luckily, I have the best cooperating teacher in the world, Mimi Hager, and she has already taught me so much!
A simple, but VERY effective, strategy she uses is called "Plan B," and it goes a little something like this. As teachers we usually plan fun and exciting activities to do with our students. We like to refer to these plans as "Plan A." They usually include interactive SMART boards, games, centers, and partner work, and these are the lessons our students want us to teach because they are enjoyable. On the other hand, we have "Plan B." These lessons are student-taught straight from their textbook. They are completed quietly at their tables. Our students hate "Plan B" because they are boring, and most important of all, SILENT.
I have begun implementing "Plan B" in the classroom when the students cannot control their behavior and focus during a lesson. They are given a warning, and if their poor behavior continues, we go to "Plan B." I have started writing "Plan B" on the white board in the morning so that the students are aware that it is there. It serves as a little reminder of what choices they can make throughout the day. "Plan B" worked very well today, and I am hoping that the students' behavior will improve so that we no longer have to go to "Plan B."