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Ginott: Principal Teachings Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.


1. Learning always takes place in present tense

Learning always takes place in the present tense, meaning teachers must not prejudge students or hold grudges. Discipline is little­-by­-li­ttle, step-b­y-step. The teacher's self- discipline is key. Model the behavior you want in students. Learning is always a personal matter to the student. Large classes often make teachers forget that each studen­t-l­earner is an individual who must be treated as such..

2. Teachers should always endeavor to use

Teachers should always endeavor to use congruent commun­ica­tion, which is commun­ication that is harmonious with students' feelings about situations and themselves The cardinal principle of congruent commun­ication is that it addresses situat­ions. It never addresses students' character or person­ality. Teachers at their best, using congruent commun­ica­tion, do not preach or moralize, nor impose guilt or demand promises. Instead, they confer dignity on their students by treating them as social equals capable of making good decisions.

3. Teachers at their worst label students

Teachers at their worst label students, belittle them, and denigrate their character: They usually do these things inadve­rte­ntly. Effective teachers invite cooper­ation from their students by describing the situation and indicating what needs to be done. They do not dictate to students or boss them around, which provokes resist­ance. Teachers have a hidden asset upon which they should always call, namely, "How can I be most helpful to my students right now?"

4. Teachers should feel free to express their ange

Teachers should feel free to express their anger, but in doing so should use I-messages rather than you- messages. Using an I-message, the teacher might say "I am very upset."­ Using a you-me­ssage, the teacher might say "You are being very rude." It is wise to use laconic language when responding to or redire­cting student misbeh­avior. Laconic means short, concise, and brief, which describes the sort of responses Ginott advocates.

5. Evaluative praise is worse than none

Evaluative praise is worse than none at all and should never be used. An example of evaluative praise is "Good boy for raising your hand." Teachers should use apprec­iative praise when responding to effort or improv­ement. This is praise in which the teacher shows apprec­iation for what the student has done, without evaluating the student's character (e.g., "I can almost smell those pine trees in your drawin­g").

6. Always respect students' privacy

Always respect students' privacy. Teachers should never pry when students do not wish to discuss personal matters, but should show they are available should students need to talk. Use sane messages when correcting misbeh­avior. Address what the student is doing, don't attack the student's character [personal traits]. Labeling disables. Use commun­ication that is congruent with student's own feelings about the situation and themse­lves.

7. Invite cooper­ation rather than demanding it

Invite cooper­ation rather than demanding it. Teachers should express their feelin­gs-­-an­ger­--but in sane ways. "­Sarcasm is hazardous. Praise can be dangerous; praise the act, not the student and in a situation that will not turn peers against the pupil. Apologies are meanin­gless unless it is clear that the person intends to improve. Teachers are at their best when they help pupils develop their self-e­steem and to trust their own experi­ence.