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Miss Matters of CLASS on Positive Climate

30 Sep 2013 by Miss Matters

DEAR MISS MATTERS:

I did a CLASS observation in a classroom where it was evident that the teacher and students enjoyed their time together, but I didn’t necessarily see many overt expressions of smiling and laughter. Are “grins and giggles” necessary for a high-range Positive Climate score?

GENTLE READER:

It is important to remember that teachers are individuals with varying styles and demeanors. Their interactions don’t always have to be full of grins and giggles to be considered positive. This is especially important to keep in mind when using the CLASS measure to code older age levels, as the way that teachers relate to older students often differs dramatically from how they relate to younger children (and for good reason).

However, as CLASS observers, we do want to look for evidence that the teacher’s facial expressions, tone of voice, and body language show enjoyment and convey genuine interest and enthusiasm during interactions. A classroom high in Positive Climate is a warm and pleasant place where relationships between teachers and students and among students can thrive.

Want to learn more about the Positive Climate dimension? Teachstone’s Video Library and dimensions guides are great places to start. Happy coding!