Great deal! Buy the A Cat in the Doghouse and A Healthy Classroom book bundle! A Cat in the Doghouse is establishing relationships with the hard-to-reach students. A Healthy Classroom tackles group dynamics with insight and practical axioms.
A Cat in the Doghouse
It’s time to transform your classroom into a more humane society
With A Cat in the Doghouse, the last in Michael Grinder’s Classroom Management trilogy, he proves again why he’s the go-to person in learning how to deal with the difficult and at-risk children in our classrooms today.
In this book, Michael uses the analogy of our beloved household pets — cats and dogs — so that we can easily understand what motivates all of our students. The techniques and tools he shares will transform your classroom into a more humane society.
Years ago, as a classroom teacher, Michael discovered our “dog” students love the routine of a traditional classroom, while our “cat” students – who love tension and risk – tend to be disruptive when they are bored.
Management by power just doesn’t work with our hard-to-reach (cat) students. With A Cat in the Doghouse, you will learn what does work to create a happier, safer classroom.
“Michael Grinder has given us the management skills needed to successfully reach the hard-to-reach students — we have to reach them to teach them.” –Pearl Nitsche, Educational Consultant
A personal note from Michael Grinder
I was not surprised to find statistics showing that in the first three years of teaching, more educators drop out than students. We have to retool our management styles so that teachers are more effective in forming relationships with our hard-to-reach students.
When developing A Cat in the Doghouse, I noticed an interesting “side-effect.” Many teachers practicing these skills have higher job satisfaction once they realized that the cat students often have the potential to be more successful than the dog students.
Another profound insight from my over forty years of doing this work — management by influence is less likely to be miscommunicated cross-culturally than management by power.
I wrote A Cat in the Doghouse so that by being proactive, we can anticipate inappropriate cat behavior. We can then manage by influence with a calm understanding that “power, when used judiciously, is appropriate as a backup.”
A Cat in the Doghouse willingly suffers the disadvantages of generalizations so we are able to look at our own classroom more objectively. We develop more realistic expectations of our students, ultimately becoming more successful teachers. It’s a win-win for both teacher and our students.
Let’s be honest, as a group, we teachers are more dog-like than cat-like … working with cats in the classroom is an opportunity to develop more facets and become more charismatic by fully developing both our dog part and cat parts. Because I coach teachers and consult with administrators, I know how tireless and caring teachers are … it is to you that I dedicate A Cat in the Doghouse.
A Healthy Classroom
Michael’s classic educational work is ENVoY. It is designed for every teacher because it is the science of classroom management. A Healthy Classroom is the art of classroom management. Combine the two and you have the dynamic duo!
While ENVoY is a collection of 31 strategies that the teacher applies either when interacting with an individual student or the class as a whole, A Healthy Classroom is designed to help us understand the hardest management situations the teacher faces – when the teacher has to grapple with both the individual and the class at the same time. While teaching the entire class, the teacher often has to quickly assess what to do with an individual student who is inappropriate. Just as troublesome is the situation when the teacher is reprimanding an individual student and the whole class is watching. A Healthy Classroom tackles these group dynamic situations with insight and practical axioms.
The first four chapters are written for the first four months of a school year. They are:
- Class formation
- The six indications of class formation
- The four techniques to accelerate it
- The changing role of the teacher
- Reading a class
- Recognizing and utilizing leaders
- The difference between positive and negative leaders
- Reading a class by peripherally watching the barometers
- The essential role of liaisons in the classroom
- How to determine the values of the class, and which students to promote who will add any missing values
- Stages of Irritability
- How to respond when the class is irritated with a student
- When to ignore inappropriate behaviors
- When to save and protect individual students
- Why not to counsel a bully
- Methods for increasing and decreasing the status of a given student
- Seasons of the school year
- How each student’s identification with the rest of the class changes
- How to accurately interpret collective voice volumes
- How to know on the chaotic days if you are a contributing cause
- When to expect the “giggles” and what to do about them
- Strategies to affect seasonal ebbs and flows of your own and the class’s energy
The fifth chapter is the high point of the book. It is basically a checklist of the indicators and benefits of a healthy classroom. Central to the concept of utilizing group dynamics in the classroom is the concept of stereotyping. It is a phenomenon that can’t be prevented, but there are ways to direct this innate occurrence so that positive benefits are gained. A must read for ambitious teachers and administrators who realize that outstanding teachers have a right and need to professionally grow.