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Home Classroom Management Ideas and Strategies

Classroom Management

How many of us have tried system after system of discipline in an attempt to attain and/or maintain control of the classroom and facilitate an effective learning environment, only to find ourselves frustrated and ironically powerless? Teaching with Love and Logic presents practical ways in which teachers and administrators can help their students become confident, responsible individuals, internalized in their discipline.

Ideas and Strategies 


1.  The following tapes and books are excellent for the purpose of learning the Love and Logic philosophy and techniques:

  • Teaching With Love and Logic
  • Quick and East Classroom Interventions
  • Teacher in Charge
  • Calming the Chaos:  Behavior Improvement Strategies for the Child With ADHD

2.  Most people benefit from reviewing these Love and Logic materials several times.  This "over-learning" will enable you to more readily apply these Love and Logic techniques while teaching.

3.  Start Slow.  Pick just one Love and Logic technique and begin to experiment.  Here are some examples to choose from:

  • Locking-in sadness or empathy before delivering consequences
  • Setting limits with enforceable statements
  • Sharing control through lots of small choices
  • Building relationships with the One Sentence Intervention
  • Neutralizing arguing with the Brain Dead technique
  • The Anticipatory Consequence
  • Etc.

4.  One-by-one, start experimenting with additional Love and Logic techniques.

5.  Review page 11 of the Discipline With Love and Logic Resource Guide, entitled, "Testing Values Against the Four Basic Principles of Love and Logic."  Choose between four and six of these principles to guide your disciplinary decisions.  Feel free to modify or add principles as long as each is consistent with Love and Logic.

6.  Click here to review an example of a Love and Logic classroom discipline plan developed by an actual teacher.  Refer to this example to help yourself get started. Once you have a Love and Logic plan developed, give a copy to each parent.  Ask them for their support in making your plan a success.

7.  In your classroom, post a list of expectations, describing how you will run your classroom.  When developing this list, be certain that you can actually enforce these expectations.  In other words, avoid making threats you cannot back-up, such as "Keep your hands to yourself" or "Be quiet when I'm teaching."  Use what we term "Enforceable Statements" to set these Love and Logic limits and expectations in your classroom.  See page 286 of Teaching With Love and Logic or page 56 of the Discipline With Love and Logic Resource Guide for examples of such Love and Logic Statements. Click here for examples of Love and Logic lists of expectations.

8.  Do not warn students about specific consequences in advance!  Just indicate that you will respond to each problem in an individualized manner, depending upon the unique situation.

9.  When making disciplinary decisions ask yourself, "How is my proposed intervention consistent with the principles of discipline I have included in my plan and my posted list of expectations?"  Encourage yourself to handle discipline problems on a case-by-case manner, focusing on the unique characteristics of each situation.

10.  If you don't know what to do at any given moment, delay the consequence, refer to your plan, and discuss possible solutions with other teachers, your administrators, the child's parents, or others.

11.  Your goal is to achieve consistency by basing each of your decisions on this same set of values or principles...rather than trying to treat every problem the same using a "cookbook" approach.


Love and Logic® offers a powerful process for giving children opportrunities to develop the decision making skills, wisdom and self-esteem essential for real-world survival.  This process is often referred to as "The Four Steps to Responsibility." 

  1. Give plenty of opportunities to make decisions about issues that are not life-or-death and that do not create problems for others.
  2. Hope that the child makes plenty of mistakes when the "price tags" of these mistakes are still small.
  3. Let empathy followed by logical consequences do the teaching.  Avoid anger, lectures, or threats.
  4. Give the child a vote of confidence by giving him or her plenty of opportunities to make the same decisions again.

If you have a scenario that you would like to share with others, please send your story via email to and it will be posted on this website.


Larry had a mom with a totally different attitude.  Instead of fearing mistakes, she was looking forward to them.  One morning, she saw Larry heading out the door without his lunch box.  Pinching her lips together with all 10 fingers, she resisted the urge to remind him.  Whispering to herself, she repeated, "affordable mistake...affordable mistake...affordable mistake..."  Mom was surprised to get no phone call from school that day.  She was also surprised that Larry didn't say anything about it when he got home.  She was NOT surprised when Larry inhaled two helpings at dinner.

The only thing that came out of her mouth was something like, "I noticed that you forgot your lunch.  That must have been upsetting."

Way to go, Mom!

The next morning was the true test of mom's resolve.  As Larry walked out the door without his lunch, all 10 of her fingers barely mustered the strength to plaster her mouth shut.  "Affordable mistake...affordable mistake...affordable mistake" kept ringing in her head.  Thirty seconds later, the door burst open, Larry ran in, he grabbed his lunch, and he proclaimed, "Oh, man!  I almost forgot!"

The bus rolled away that morning with a much wiser boy.


Michigan Department of Education