Sunday, October 26, 2008

It’s much easier to lighten up than tighten up....

I am currently writing a paper to go with the student teaching class. This paper is discussing classroom management and I had a line in there I liked for coaching as well as teaching: "it's easier to lighten up than thighten up as the year goes on". I was talking about how I start my school year out really strict, impersonal, and rigid and then slowly ease off and become more personal with the class. Show my class the human side of me as well and also show them that I care about them as students and people too! I believe that it's harder to be really nice early and then try to lay the hammer down just does not work as well as layer the hammer down early and often and then relaxing it as you build relationships with your players.

I use this exact same philsophy with my basketball teams I've coached. I start out the year really hard, quick to discipline, and demanding on them at all times. Don't smile a lot, don't laugh, don't get personal at all. Then, as the year goes on, once I've built the respect that is needed and they understand we are all about business, I will back off and start to express to them that I care about the as people. I will also let them see my lighter side and that I really am a human!

Do you coaches agree? Any thoughts on this philsophy?

1 comment:

ProfSeeman said...

You make some good points above.
However, I also think that this can be helpful to you:
Go to:

If you get this book and video: PREVENTING Classroom Discipline Problems, [they are in many libraries, so you don't have to buy them] email me and I can refer you to the sections of the book and the video [that demonstrates the effective vs. the ineffective teacher] that can help you.

[I also teach an online course on these issues that may be helpful to you at: ]

If you cannot get the book or video, email me and I will try to help.
Best regards,


Howard Seeman, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus,
City Univ. of New York

Prof. Seeman