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Establishing Ground Rules Essay

1135 words - 5 pages

Task 1: Analyse different ways to establish ground rules with learners which underpin appropriate behaviour and respect for others
The fact that all students are different means that they will all have their own unique way of looking at life, expectations regarding behaviour and requirements for a comfortable learning setting. The teacher needs to manage the class in order to accommodate everyone’s needs and expectations. Whilst there may be the belief amongst 99% of learners that swearing at fellow students and teachers in the classrooms is unacceptable, the fact that it isn’t needs to be stated for the remaining 1%. It is for these reasons that a set of ground rules regarding ...view middle of the document...

Students will have had no part in developing this set of rules so the best way of helping them to understand and accept them is in discussing the reasons behind them, for example the class must finish on time as the cleaners only have a set time to work on the room before the building is locked by the caretaker at 10pm. It is important to note that there may be serious implications if the teacher fails to inform the class of health and safety regulations. They could be in breach of their contract and liable for accidents.
Rules devised by the Teacher
Having run classes previously the teacher will be in a very good position to determine what rules are needed to enable the class to function. Previous experience may necessitate the apparently bizarre rule of “no pets in class” – until discussion on this leads to the explanation that a student brought his pet mouse along!
However, rules set by the teacher may not be so readily accepted by the students as they are, as it were, imposed upon them and particularly if they can’t see any benefit to themselves. This can lead to difficulties if these students are then seen to not be obeying the rules.

By Mutual Agreement
Ground rules which have been set by the students themselves are more likely to be accepted by those same students. Indeed, the class itself will police breaking of the rules as they have ownership of them. We want students to take responsibility for their learning and co-working to establish rules is an important step.
A good way of setting out to establish ground rules is by saying “let’s agree some ground rules that will help us all learn together”.
Typical ground rules might be:
• starting and finishing on time
• coming prepared
• listening to others without interruptions
• participating
• saying when you don’t understand
• when anyone is speaking, addressing the whole group and not just the teacher
• switching off mobile phones
• treating others’ contributions with respect
• keeping personal issues out of the session
• maintaining confidentiality within the group
• no swearing or racist comments

A combination of the above methods can be used. Of particular benefit would be to try to get the learners to vocalise the rules that the college has laid...

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