Breaking the ringleader ...
Having taught for many years face-to-face; now no longer in this realm. With typical occasional frequency, when the conversation goes to this matter, they will say 'bet you dont miss teaching the kids then'.
As you can tell, they don't teach hence why they make such a darn fool statement.
The majority of my teaching of young people has been an absolute pleasure. Yes there was the occasional group or individual that made it difficult. But ironically I have found adults especially teachers more challenging at times and more inclined to behave inappropriately.
On the rare occasion when you had the group that were a challenge; the trick was to work out who the ringleader was ... and break them.
There was two simple methods that could be applied five or more years ago:
- Devise an exit strategy that was meteoric and left the rest of the group aghast at this human sacrifice.
- More common was to break them, own them, control them and make them your intellectual play thing.
If you struggle with either, you clearly don't teach or incapable of teaching 16 to 19 students.
Often having 'got away with it' for years before, the students entered a discovery process. Where a variety of souls in further education aware of the non-obligatory nature of post-compulsory education at that time; were willing to install a culture of control and therefore success.
Indiscipline does lead to poor retention and equally unsatisfactory results. Breaking the ringleader, owning them and having them acknowledge your authority may seem to many a leap too far. But, not doing this will ensure that your professional life is hell.