Narration nixed for classroom management

Narrating class activities is a common practice for teachers. However, a more in-depth look into this teaching method reveals that it is not the most suitable classroom management technique. 

You’ve probably heard numerous examples of narration throughout your high school years. Your teachers might have commended the way one of your classmates is following instructions, or given a model with someone else’s listening skills. This is what narration for class management essentially is.

And here is why it should be nixed:

Narration creates a false sense of achievement

When a teacher is continuously speaking throughout a class exercise, a large percentage of the addresses towards students is intended as an example. This, however, creates a false sense of achievement, as students are merely completing the tasks they are given. The more scientific term for this phenomenon is false praise.

Bad examples are rarely pointed out

The whole idea behind narrating a class is to improve class management by showing a good example. This is why children who misbehave or simply slack with their tasks are rarely called out. Thus, many specialists say that narration can actually be a promoter of bad behavior in classrooms. 

Narration is not an effective classroom management strategy for boosting enthusiasm

While at first students enjoy the fact that teachers sometimes point them out as an excellent example to the whole class, over time, this effect is diminished. This means that after a lesson or two, the fact that the teacher is narrating in front of the class becomes meaningless to students – both the ones given as an example and the rest of the class. 

Narration makes students overly dependant on their teachers

A constant stream of instructions and guidance, in other words, narration, often makes students think that they need an authoritative figure to guide them through everyday processes. Unfortunately, narration can also lead to a lack of creativity and initiative on the part of students if they are always looking for advice and instruction from their teachers.

While narration remains a questionable classroom management technique, many teachers are looking into other ways to improve their classes. A recent example is a teacher from Texas who has decided to use the Dubsmash mobile application to make his Spanish courses more interesting to students.