The ‘Responsive Classroom’

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         Back in 2008 when I had the wonderful experience to be a huge part of opening up the doors to a brand new school in the city of Detroit, we wanted to make a better learning life for students in that area. Since I could remember it’s always been a passion of my career, to reach and teach teachers on how to manage their classroom. Here was where I met one of my favorite classroom management series of all time…The Responsive Classroom Approach. The work of this program, by Roxanne Kriete, Carol Davis, and a team of others, spoke volumes to me on how to approach the discipline of a student that is in your classroom environment. The foundation of this approach in summary, is about being responsible of creating class rules (norms) together, being fully responsible for your actions as a student, and letting the ‘time fit the crime’…(how your consequences need to match your offense).

This all made so much sense to me so much that when I was approached to be the representative to teach RC to other teachers on my team, and in my building, I fell in love with it and knew I found my calling. The next level came when I was asked to be an adjunct professor at Madonna University in Michigan,  and teach on the collegiate level in the evenings to up and coming teachers. Three of the RC books were even the required text for my course!

 When I then moved to Atlanta and joined the Lower School team at my current school, even teaching Kindergarten, I brought the same techniques right with me. Other than showing me I could  survive the Kinder years, it helped me to see that middle school or elementary, young or old, when you follow these approaches they work! At the end of that year, I did a professional development series on the Responsive Classroom approach, focusing in on Morning Meeting. The basic 4 steps of how to start the day, coupled with a letter to your class daily was one of my favorite parts of RC. Lower School enjoyed using those strategies, even when I went back to the middle school atmosphere from the divsion.

Here is the book below…definitely worth checking out! Especially for new teachers that want to build a positive classroom culture….so that just means a teacher period right? 

Morning Mtg book

I could go on and on about this approach. As I work on my doctoral degree in educational leadership, my main focus is training and getting teachers fired up for the classrooms of today and tomorrow. 

I highly recommend that you check out the Responsive Classroom approach as an educator, and even if you use one part of it, like the Zenergy Chime, it will change your classroom culture only for the better~….

Here are a few other dynamic books of the awesome RC program. I’m always happy to chat more on it anytime! 

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4 thoughts on “The ‘Responsive Classroom’

  1. Tasha,
    I’ve had the opportunity to occasionally see your smiling face in the lunch room but we haven’t officially met, hi😀 I’m Nicole. I’m also from Detroit and did my field placements/teaching mostly in and around Detroit. I’m an ELC teacher at Mount Vernon going on my third year and would love to know if this approach would work with my little friends?
    Thank you, Nicole Wright

    • Hi there Nicole!
      You are so sweet! I have seen you around as well, so it is so nice to meet you in the blogging world. Wow! That’s so cool you are from Detroit, and did your field placement there. I would love for us to connect some time in the summer or upcoming school year.! I think this approach, even though the Responsive Classroom approach is targeted to begin mostly in Kindergarten, I think it can definitely start with the little ones. Let’s set up some time to connect! I am around the rest of June, July mostly out, and back in action ready to roll for August. I look forward to meeting you in person formally, and exchanging stories of ‘The D’ and RC!
      Talk soon! Keep on enjoying summer break:).

    • That’s awesome Nicole! I am back in town and in office later that week, so let’s definitely grab lunch and chat one day if we can. Looking forward to connecting! Keep enjoying summer break:)

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