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Why You’re Struggling with Classroom Management: What Nobody Told You

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Show Notes:

Over the past couple of weeks on the podcast, we've been talking about a couple of different topics. One of them was how to set up your teacher planning binder. And the other one was how to manage all of that student data

As I was recording those episodes, it really got me thinking about how classroom management is a much broader topic than what we traditionally think about classroom management as. Then that got me thinking about why you're really struggling with classroom management…because it’s probably something that nobody has told you before.

When people come to me and say that they're really struggling with their classroom management, typically what they mean by that is that maybe there are one, or two, or a handful of kids who are giving them a run for their money. It’s the kids who are chatting all the time, not following directions, or being disrespectful.  

These things are all how we’ve traditionally thought about classroom management. When we think about classroom management issues, we tend to move directly into talking about student behavior. 

But here's the fascinating part of all of this. As I've worked with more than 1,500 teachers inside the R.E.A.D.Y for School Academy over the last few years, what's become so much clearer to me than ever before, is that classroom management is not just about managing students. 

I think that's why we have so much trouble with managing our classrooms. We get caught into the negative understanding and belief that classroom management really is just about managing students. I realized that it all really boils down to four key areas, all of which fall under the larger umbrella of how I define classroom management. 

  1. The management of space and materials
  2. The management of relationships, systems, and behavior
  3. The management of planning and student data
  4. The management of relationships with parents

Then there’s one more crucial piece to this classroom management puzzle, and that is how we manage our mindset.

I like to think about managing our mindset like the glue that holds everything together. It's the unseen part that impacts all of these other areas. It truly impacts how we experience our classrooms every single day. If we don’t manage our mindset, then everything else is affected.

We tend to forget, or maybe not even realize, that our students react to their environment. They react to how we as educators are approaching our classroom management. This includes our confidence, how positive we are, and how happy we are to be with them every single day. This is why I can give you every strategy in the world, but at the end of the day, if you don’t believe in your heart that it’s possible to create a magical space for your kids to love, then the strategies don’t even matter. Our mindset matters.

I understand the overwhelm of classroom management. I’ve been where you are. But I’ve also experienced the other side of it, and can give you the solution. I want you to carry the confidence and empowerment that you know you’ve got everything handled, no matter what goes wrong on any given day. That comes with such a feeling of peace, and there’s nothing like it.

If you would like to troubleshoot the classroom management inside your classroom, be sure to download my free Ultimate Classroom Management Checklist.

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

  • An explanation of the four key areas that fall under classroom management.
  • How classroom management is so much more than student behavior.
  • Why your mindset is the glue that holds everything together in your classroom.
  • The importance of managing your physical space, wall space, resources, and materials.

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.

💛 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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