TeacherBoss Hacks: Managing Student Interruptions
I’m back with another TeacherBoss hack from my classroom to yours. Today’s focus is finding a way to manage student interruptions during a lesson. Have you ever been really into a lesson? Everything’s going your way, then you ask a phenomenal question and hands shoot up. You see a student raising their hand that doesn’t usually participate and you think “Man, I am on FIRE! All my students are engaged!” …and then you call on the kid and they ask to go to the bathroom, or for a drink of water, or how much longer until lunch. Bummer. I have been there and it is not my favorite. It is usually met with my no-nonsense glare that implies, “This is NOT the right time for you to be asking me that!”
Here is a tip I recently learned in an inservice:
Teach students the difference between a public and private question.
Public questions have are about the lesson or assignment and have answers that will benefit the entire class. Students can go ahead and raise their hand for these. Public questions let the teacher know the student is listening and cares about their learning.
Private questions are not about the lesson, or an assignment, or anything that is currently happening. If a student needs to ask this question in the middle of a lesson, they put their hand over their heart and the teacher will get to them when momentum allows.
So there you have it.
Public Questions: Hand in the air
Private Questions: Hand on chest
I will definitely be taking time at the beginning of the year to discuss, model, role play, sort, and correct.
I would love to hear what you use in your classroom. Comment below and let me know!