Ground Rules

4.1 – Explain ways to establish ground rules with students which underpin appropriate behaviour and respect for others.

Good classroom management depends a lot on how I establish the ground rules at the beginning of a course. Students/learners need to know what I expect from them and what they can expect from me. They need to know where the boundaries lie and what will happen if they step over them.
Ground rules relate to the way a group function together. Learners need a sense of structure and will feel psychologically safer if they know what is expected of them.The learners may have already come across institutional rules, relating, for instance, to eating and drinking in ICT/offices, smoking, use of mobiles and specific subject related health and safety regulations.
Other factors relating to the effectiveness of ground rules include, the nature, size and maturity of the group, and the setting within which I teach my subject.
When I deliver a lecture to my watch on the fire station, it is usually a small, mature group of individuals, who are usually willing and want to learn/refresh their knowledge, skills and understanding – especially when the training is risk based and not fictional.
The learners need to have a good understanding of the need for ground rules. To raise awareness of appropriate classroom behaviour. These rules will guide the class for the entire time they are together. To develop classroom ground rules that are mutually agreed/negotiated between learner and teacher. It would be a good idea to establish in my own mind, what might be appropriate.
Also, try to establish my own personal ground rules – good time keeping, fully prepared for lessons, marking completed and returned in good time. This shows my personal commitment to the teaching, learning relationship.
Some of the ground rules may have to be mandatory; bullying & harassment, equality & diversity, which are some of many set by the fire service. Other ground rules can be...