Teaching Learning Leading K-12
112: Classroom Management - Withitness and Emotional Objectivity, part one

112: Classroom Management - Withitness and Emotional Objectivity, part one

September 24, 2016
Dr. Robert Marzano talks about every teacher needing a common mental set when focusing on classroom management (Marzano, Classroom Management that Works, 2003). This mental set is comprised of withitness and emotional objectivity. 

This is part one of a two part look at this mental set.

For this episode we will focus on withitness which is being aware of what is going on around you. It is often that sixth sense that a teacher needs to have. Often it is spoken of as an extra set of eyes in the back of your head. 

No matter what, withitness is a condition that you have to teach yourself to turn on and stay tuned to.

In the Marvel Comics realm there is a character named Spider-Man. He has the ability to recognize danger and foretell the potential of disaster approaching. When he feels that tingle in his brain he knows that he better pay attention or move out of the way. The classroom teacher is no different, He has a Spidey sense as well. 
It is a matter of paying attention to it.

The better a teacher gets to know his kids the better he will become at recognizing warning signs of impending danger.

One sure fire way to turn on your withitness is to stand at your door during class changes. Yea, I know it is easy to get distracted, but the more you make this a priority the better you will become at recognizing issues are entering your classroom.Talk with the kids when they enter. Shake their hands. Look into their eyes Chit chat with them in the hall. If you do you these things you will notice when there is anger, sadness, or other issues walking through the door.

The same applies for during class. You have to pay attention to their eyes. You have to pay attention to their mannerisms. Listen with your ears and eyes. If you are truly paying attention you will notice when there is something wrong. Once you notice it. Address it. Go to the kids. Find out what is wrong. You will be happy that you did.

This is withitness.

Work on turning yours on and you will be able to address issues before they become issues.

Next time we will focus on emotional objectivity.
Here are some links for more information on withitness:

Length: 14:10

111: Mandi Mathis & The Littlest Inventor

111: Mandi Mathis & The Littlest Inventor

September 18, 2016


Mandi C. Mathis has written a book called The Littlest Inventor.

She works for a law firm, is a wife and a mom and now an author.  
She and her family live in Athens, Georgia.


Mandi hopes all kids, teachers, parents. and counselors will read her book.
But she will tell you that the book was written for her son Sawyer. 
She wanted him to "have a positive literary role model that looked like him." 
Sawyer was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder.

The book is colorful and has wonderful illustrations. The storyline is interesting and does a wonderful job of pointing out that it is ok to be different.

Here is a picture of Sawyer who was featured in Autism: Asperger's Digest.

I love the part of the interview where Mandi talks about celebrating differences as she says, "We love different. We are all different." 
We talk about what Autism Spectrum Disorder is as well as what teachers and other adults need to recognize about working with kids who have sensory overload.

Listen to her talk about "misbehavior is just missed behaviors."

I hope that you get a chance to get a copy of The Littlest Inventor after you listen to Mandi. 
110: Kip Jones and his Urban Character Education Books

110: Kip Jones and his Urban Character Education Books

September 10, 2016


Kip “Mr. J” Jones  is a School Counselor at Alcoa Elementary School  in Alcoa, Tennessee.


He has written a series of wonderful books focused on teaching character education. His books are part of a series he calls Urban Character Education, published by Boys Town Press.


The series follows the adventures and interactions of Willie Bohanon and his friends. They are written in rhyme and illustrated and printed as a graphic novel.

Listen for Kip to explain the Biblio-Rhymology concept.

The characters are easy to identify with and his point is clear to anyone as soon as you pick up his books. Each book also has an activity guide as a supplement to support using the book for working with kids.



He currently has three books with a  fourth on the way: The Power of an Attitude of Gratitude, The Power of Bystanders, and The Power of Self-D. Coming soon is a book focused on dealing with peer pressure.

His book series is a winner of the Mom’s Choice Gold Award.


In addition to his full time counseling work and writing, Kip is also a national speaker, a husband and a father.

He and his family live in Maryville, Tennessee.

Find out more about Kip, Willie & his friends, Urban Character Education, 

and biblio-rhymology






Get in touch with Kip

email:  kjones@alcoaschools.net

phone: 865-560-6490

Length: 38:44

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