Classroom dynamics

After discussing the classroom as a group, structure of a group and interaction in the classroom, we are now in a position to understand the term classroom dynamics. The word dynamics is borrowed from natural sciences. It is a branch of physics dealing with matter in motion. In terms of classroom interaction it can be considered as the force or forces that produce activity or change in the classroom. Interaction between the teacher and the pupil, as well as that between two individual pupils or between groups and individuals is one of the forces that produce activity and change. What kind of interaction produces desired activities and change in the classroom?

Under the title ‘interaction’ we have discussed Flander’s technique with a view to analyse the interaction in the classroom in terms of teacher activity and student’s activity. We shall now discuss the ten categories in order to find out which teacher activities are likely to produce healthy classroom dynamics. It will be easily noted by the reader that the activity in the first category is expected to influence the pupils indirectly. As we move from the first to the seventh category of teacher activity, the influence is more and more direct, and the teacher more and more authoritative. Early Childhood Program has given below the five types of Classroom Dynamics and they are as follows:

  1. Accept Feelings: pupils in the classroom have both positive and negative feelings, which they express through their responses. When the teacher accepts the tone of the feelings-enthusiastic, warm, friendly or depressive, cold, hostile, that is positive or negative, without expressing her anger and displeasure, her response falls into this first category.
  2. Praise or Encourages: Teacher’s behaviour in this category is compressed of praising the pupils when they give desirable responses and encouraging them to improve when the responses are not appropriate.
  3. Accepts or Uses Ideas ofStudents: In an active classroom, the pupils come out with many new suggestions and ideas. Instead of brushing these ideas aside and keeping strictly on the track of completing the course content, the teacher grasps the relevant ideas and suggestions and clarifies and develops them. Such behaviour falls into the third category.
  4. Asks Questions: Many teachers avoid explaining every small detail in the classroom. Instead they ask leading and thought-provoking questions to set the pupils think and develop their own understanding of the matter. This is category four.
  5. Lecturing: As opposed to the above category, many teachers prefer to express their own ideas and options about the content matter; explain the procedures or give facts and information. There is more or less one-sided outpouring of stimuli without much consideration of giving opportunity to pupil’s overt responses.

The ideal situation for a teacher, as Rousseau had said, would be to have only one pupil to teach. According to Nursery Teacher Training, a private tutor teaches in such an ideal situation and consequently attains results faster than in a classroom because there is continuous give and take between them. However, when the ideal is to educate all the citizens of the country it is idle to talk about this one to one ratio. Moreover, it will not lead to proper social development. A classroom of many pupils, therefore, is not only a must but is also beneficial for the psycho-social development of the child.