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Achieving silence in class is one of the most difficult challenges with which teachers have to deal daily. It is not easy to maintain silence within groups of students. However, these guidelines can help a lot.
The groups of students in the school are made up of:
- Small children who are at a key moment in language and communication development. At this stage they have just acquired tools that allow them to express themselves without limits, so there is an urgent need to speak and express themselves in the form of screams and uncontrollable noise.
- They are also in full moral development. It is difficult for them to understand the meaning of the rules, rather than as an obligation.
- When they are teenagers they are in full self-affirmation process and it is difficult to keep their attention.
To maintain silence in class and for children to learn to value it as a way of respecting others, reflecting and learning. It's fundamental:
- Establish the norm. It is imperative that students commit to comply with the rules and also understand them. To do this, it is important to explain to them why it is necessary for them to be silent at certain times and when these are the times when they can speak in class.
- Consequences of not following the rules. Just as the rules will be clear, the consequences will be as well. If they are not complied with, the consequences will be applied in such a way that they were agreed in advance. These must be adhered to accordingly. There is no room for arbitrariness.
- Self-regulation strategies for students. Children need to understand the need to speak as a way of respecting others and thus favoring coexistence and learning in the classroom.
- The teacher uses a leisurely pace when speaking. Yelling is useless. It is very effective to play with the intensity of the voice. Above all, it is very effective to use it with adolescents.
- Stare. Staring at the child you are talking to at the moment should not cause immediate effect.
- Moments of relief. Children and adolescents have the need to communicate so it will be convenient that they have spaces and moments so that they can do so.
One last tip to keep quiet requires special mention. Using the playful alternative presents us with different fun, effective and positive formulas for children to train their regulation strategies and thus achieve the cessation of whispering in class. Among the various games that exist we can propose:
- We prepare for silence. Explain to the children that before maintaining silence they must relax, for this they must be shown a series of indicators to follow such as: take a deep breath, sit down, cross your arms, close your mouth and open your ears to listen.
- 1, 2,3… Silence. To start this game you have to allow the children to shout, move and talk. All at the same time without being understood. But they must be attentive because when the teacher says 1,2,3 silence everyone must keep silent.
- The songs. Another fun way to keep them quiet, especially when they are very young, is to use songs. When the children are talking, the teacher will begin to sing a song (for example, the owl says shhh) and the little ones will join in to finish it and then silence will reign.
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