Classroom Management in the Technology Infused Classroom

It always starts with a well-planned lesson, but there are also tricks and tips that can be used to manage the learning environment. A good starting point is Classroom Management and Configuration for easy to follow steps that can be taken to increase student productivity whether using a single computer, multiple computers, or one laptop for every student.

Next, you need to know how to use your School District's network. How do you save files so students can access them? How do students save files so you can access them? How can students use your network so they can collaborate with others. Do you have a list with each student's log-in information? What features are available at your District that can help your students access information efficiently? Find out the answers to these questions before you start.

Note: Classroom management is about creating safe and productive learning environments. Do not try to use a computer that is sooooo old and soooo slow that the class period is over before it "boots up." If that's the case, it is time to discard the computer and upgrade to a system that actually works. Contact your helpdesk if you are not sure. All of the tips below assume you have a functioning system.

The Single Computer Classroom

You may only have one computer, but you can still make effective use out of that resource. That's Not A Drinking Fountain can get you started thinking about what you are going to do with that computer beyond take attendance and grades. For example, if you can couple the one computer with an LCD projector and speakers you have a great presentation tool. Add in a wireless schoolpad and you even have increased proximity to students.

The Multiple Computer Classroom

Most classrooms have access to multiple computers - classroom workstations or mobile laptops in carts. Classroom management is important to keep students on task and to ensure that the computer enhances learning and doesn't distract. Room layout needs to be considered. Jaimie McKenzie discusses the distribution issues in The Wired Classroom. The article is from 1998, but (unfortunately) it is still relevantBarbara Bray offers practical tips for scheduling and rotating students in Classroom Management Strategies for Computer Use.
(Citation: Bray, Barbara. Classroom Management Strategies for Computer Use. managementstrategies.pdf. 2003. My eCoach® eLibrary. Online. Available. 15 May 2007. <>)

The 24/7 Classroom

Managing a 1:1 classroom environment can bring its own challenges. The Irving ISD implemented a plan in which every high school student receives a laptop. See Inving High School Laptop Initiative to learn from their experience. The Tech & Learning Journall also give welcome tips. Of course, the best resource is our own 24/7 teachers in PSUSD!

Additional Resources

Out on a Lim provides ideas for whole class instruction, support for students that have difficulty reading online material, lab management, student helpers, scheduling, and preparation.

For suggestions on how to make the best use of instructional time, refer to Intel's "Managing Computer Use".

Planning to have your students create digital stories? Check out Digital Storytelling: A Practical Classroom Management Strategy before you "Roll 'Em".

Internet4Classrooms has an extensive list of links focused on Classroom Organization and Workstations which include ideas for setting up and using learning and literacy centers.

The National Education Association provides general classroom management strategies that work in all situations.

If you have comments, suggestions or questions, please notify Lee Grafton.