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The Elements of the Horizontal Axis:

Using a Management Matrix to Develop and Set Clear Expectations

When implementing your classroom management plan, do you ever hear, “But Mr./Mrs. So-and-So doesn’t make me do that!” or, “That’s not how we do it in our classroom!” As an art teacher, trying to keep up with twenty different sets of rules, while trying to enforce my own in the art room, is enough to make me want to hide in the teachers’ lounge and never come out.

That’s why I’m so excited about this upcoming school year.

For the first time at my school, each teacher will post a similar behavior matrix in his or her classroom.

Notice how I didn’t say the same matrix. Of course, students are expected to do different things in their classroom than in the gym or in the art room. However, the core of these matrices will remain the same so that expectations are consistent for students throughout the school.

I recently got together with my specials team to hash out what the matrix will look like for students coming to specials.

We felt it was important to meet as a team so that students would see consistent language and expectations across all of our subjects.

Here is what we came up with.

You can get a copy that looks like mine, but in MS Word for you to personalize right here. If you’d like to share this with classroom teachers at your school, you can download a more generic template here. If you teach Middle School or High School, expectations might look different, but a matrix can still be helpful once you tweak it to fit your needs.