Restorative Circles in Your Classroom: How to Get Started

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Show Notes:

If you are feeling frustrated with how disrespectful your class is being, you’re not alone. We hear this so much right now. Covid created new problems in our classrooms that we have never had to deal with before. So how can we work on and prevent these challenging behaviors? 

Improving and preventing challenging behaviors starts with creating a safe and consistent, caring space for all students. As much as we love fun seasonal classroom management strategies and a good classroom management hack, they won’t be successful unless there is already a foundation of respect and consistency. A great way to establish a safe and consistent classroom is to implement restorative circles.

Restorative circles allow us to explicitly teach and actively practice so many skills that our students need. By consistently using restorative circles in our classrooms, we can help our students develop conflict management skills and focus on mediation and agreement instead of punishment. This helps our students take responsibility for their actions and resolve problems and conflicts in a respectful and effective way.

If you are wanting to begin implementing restorative circles in your classroom, the end of the school year is a great time to try them and experiment with them as you already have an established relationship with your students. If you are unsure how to start, I am sharing the key things you need to know to get started in your classroom. We are covering what restorative circles are, how to get started with grounding rules, examples of when to use restorative circles, what kinds of questions to ask, how to create agreements for restorative circles, and the importance of creating a follow-up plan.

If you feel like you need more support with implementing restorative circles in your classroom, join us inside the Classroom Management Club. We are going to be digging deeper into restorative circles in the coming months to help you implement them effectively in your classroom. Plus, you’ll receive a PDF overview of restorative circles to help you get started. I hope to see you inside!

Inside this week's show, you'll learn:

  • Why you should be implementing restorative circles and the data to back up the practices
  • What restorative circles are and how you can use them in your classroom
  • How to get started with implementing restorative circles
  • Why starting with grounding rules is so important for effectively implementing this practice
  • 5 examples of when you can use restorative circles
  • Ideas for kinds of questions to ask for productive and effective restorative circles with your students
  • The importance of establishing agreements for respectful communication to help set your students up for success
  • Why determining next steps and creating a follow-up plan helps the positivity continue beyond the circle

Links & resources mentioned inside this episode:

I hope this information is helpful as you prepare for your first, second, or third year of teaching. Until next time, remember, just because you're a beginning elementary teacher, there's no need for you to struggle like one.

πŸ’› Lori

Dr. Lori Friesen | Beginning Teacher Mentor

Creator of the R.E.A.D.Y. for School Academy, Dr. Lori Friesen has mentored thousands of beginning teachers across the country through her workshops and courses. Host of the popular podcast, Beginning Teacher Talk, and creator of the innovative literacy program for 1st and 2nd grade, Dogs Help Kids Read and Succeed, Dr. Lori is dedicated to serving educators and inspiring learners. Learn more at and at

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