The educational process is crucial to not only providing a quality education for students but also for preparing students for taking charge and thriving in an ever-changing world. However, without the teacher’s authority in the classroom, students would not be discipline enough to take on the demanding roles required to lead and sustain a strong society.
The Authority of the teacher brings order and focus to the educational process. The teacher has the power to start, stop, and control the learning process throughout the day. Highly successful teachers make sure that students and situations are in alignment with the rules and regulations classroom and administration.
Educators must instill in students the significance of the educational process. Knowing why they come to school every day and why they are learning will go a long way in helping students take school life more seriously.
The Misconception of Authority
Having been a teacher for over 25 years, I have witnessed the downfall of many new teachers entering the industry. Some simply left the industry due to burnout. But one of the common faults that many shared is that they took authority in the classroom too lightly.
I was a victim of this type of thinking. I believed that my students would be polite, respectful, and eager to learn about how the world works. However, I was in for a rude awakening when classroom management and discipline became a huge issue.
A month had not gone by before I start thinking that I had chosen the wrong profession. I had to reexamine my expectations and get in alignment with reality. However, I had a group of peers that wanted to see my succeed and I was humble enough to listen and learn.
When a teacher does not understand the importance of their authority, the education process suffers greatly. For example, because of the stress of attempting to redirect students all day, I didn’t have the energy to deliver instructions effectively. Constant interruptions subdue the focus and purpose of the subjects being taught.
Once students lose focus and purpose it is difficult to completely regain it within a day. Therefore, the educational process experiences a quality issue. A teacher must either push through it or revisit the subject the next day or later in the week.
Taking Authority on the First Day
The importance of taking authority on the first day is crucial if a teacher wants to positively impact the educational process in the classroom. Taking authority means doing the following:
Setting the tone. When you set the tone, you establish yourself as the person to reckon with over the course of the school year. Setting the tone doesn’t mean that you are rude or disrespectful, but what it does require is that you are firm and consistent in the rules and expectations you have presented.
On Being Tested
Almost immediately after you establish the rules and expectation, some students will test you to see if you can back up your authority with decisive responses.
An Educator must act immediately and consistently against disruptors that would interfere with the educational process.
An immediate response to an intentional classroom violation will help instill in the minds of students that an educator means business.
Among all the emergencies that are going on in the world today, including the Covid-19, protest, and violence, students face major distractions. Educators must seek understanding but at the same time compete for focus and order.
Weak teachers, who take authority lightly, will most likely not survive the pressures of the modern-day classroom.
Why are We here?
This is a big question in the minds of students, whether directly or indirectly, is Why Are WE HERE. Educators must address this question not just at the beginning of the school year, but constantly throughout the semester. Students must constantly be reminded about their importance in the educational process and what it produces.
When students understand that they are part of a generation that are being prepared to take leadership for the next generation, they will be less rebellious against authority.
The purpose of the American educational process is to graduate well-informed students with the character and values to pursue a quality livelihood and to lead their communities. The authority of the teacher is the solution to making this a reality.