About Marvin Marshall...
Marvin Marshall is a professional speaker and seminar leader who presents his program, "Discipline without Stress, Punishments, or Rewards - Raise Responsibility and Promote Learning," to schools across the world.
His program was developed upon his returning to full-time teaching after 24 years of counseling, supervision, and administration. He has taught primary and upper elementary grades and has been an elementary school principal. He has taught all middle grades and has been a middle school counselor and assistant principal. He has taught all high school grades and has been a high school counselor, assistant principal of supervision and control, assistant principal of curriculum and instruction, and high school principal. He has also served as a district director of education.
Dr. Marshall, who is certified by the William Glasser Institute, presents for Phi Delta Kappa International, for several leading seminar companies, and for schools and school districts. His presentation schedule is on the calendar of his website.
In his book Discipline
without Stress, Punishments, or Rewards - How Teachers and Parents Promote Responsibility & Learning, he clearly and concisely demonstrates how the external approaches of relying on rules, imposing consequences, rewarding students for appropriate behavior, and punishing students to make them obey are all counterproductive.
The book can be purchased from the National Association of Elementary School Principals, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the National School Boards Association, Phi Delta Kappa, at local bookstores, or from his website www.MarvinMarshall.com.
Questions submitted to Kathleen Carpenter at firstname.lastname@example.org will be considered by Marv Marshall for responses in future monthly columns in the Teachers.Net Gazette.
Click to visit Marvin Marshall's Homepage.
by Dr. Marvin Marshall
If learning is what we value, then we ought to value the process of learning as much as the result of learning.
People are attracted to activities where they feel free of psychological or emotional pain. Learning is promoted in a climate where people feel safe and cared for. The adage, "People don't care what you know until they know you care," is applicable. When working with one middle school, William Glasser stated,
The teachers stopped almost all coercion--an approach that was radically different from the way most of these students had been treated since kindergarten. When we asked the students why they were no longer disruptive and why they were beginning to work in school, over and over they said, "You care about us." (Phi Delta Kappan, April, 1997, p. 601)
This idea of communicating a caring interest to those with whom we work was first documented in a classic study on human relations and is known as the "Hawthorne Effect." It emanated from a study that took place in the late 1920's at Western Electric's Hawthorne plant near Chicago. Researchers went into the factory to see if, by increasing room lighting for a group of employees, the productivity would increase. Improvements did indeed seem to boost worker output. But much to their surprise, when the researchers analyzed a comparable group with no change in the lighting, the productivity also improved. Further study and analysis of this puzzling result showed that productivity increased because the workers were delighted that management was showing some kind of interest in them. The very fact that workers knew they were receiving attention motivated them to try to improve. The workers felt that management cared about them and that they were valued. Similarly, a young person who feels valued by an adult reaps the benefit of the Hawthorne Effect.
People have difficulty understanding that someone cares for them when coercion is used. W. Edwards Deming, the American who showed Japan in the post World War II years how to improve quality, understood this. One of his core principles was to "Drive out fear." Deming understood that motivation, performance, productivity, and quality are optimum when coercion is at a minimum and when a trusting, caring climate is at the maximum.
People want to feel they belong. They ordinarily will not congregate where they feel uncomfortable. In a classroom where the teacher and class have a forced relationship, the student who disrupts the class becomes a hero. The reason is that a coercive climate is an adversarial one. In a climate of positive relationships, the disrupting student does not receive support from the other students.
There are as many kinds of relationships as there are people in the world. Voluntary relationships are chosen as, for example, between friends. However, classroom relationships are involuntary. Students are mostly assigned to their classes and thereby the relationships between teachers and students, and between students and students, are not chosen. A classroom conducive to learning is one where good relations exist between teacher and student and among students themselves. In these classrooms where students feel emotionally and psychologically safe, involuntary relationships become voluntary ones. The reason is that students want to be there.
Where learning is promoted, certain activities are unacceptable. These include ridiculing, threatening, forcing, compelling, punishing, bribing, manipulating, blaming, complaining, putting down, nagging, and badgering. We rarely use these coercive tactics with our friends. Coercion is simply not effective in influencing others while trying to keep good relationships.
- Motivation is optimal when coercion is at a minimum and a trusting, caring climate is at the maximum.
- Involuntary relationships become voluntary when people are where they want to be. Learning is promoted in this type of climate.
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Past Gazette Articles by Dr. Marshall:
- Ronald Reagan and the Art of Influence (June 2009)
- Discipline Is a Liberating Word (May 2009)
- Eliciting vs. Punishments (Apr. 2009)
- Habit vs. Awareness for the 3 Practices and for the Hierarchy of Social Development (Mar. 2009)
- How to Be Consistent (Feb. 2009)
- Teaching is an Art, Not a Science (Jan. 2009)
- Tapping Into Internal Motivation (Dec. 2008)
- People Do Better When They Feel Good (Nov. 2008)
- The Brain and Sleep (Oct. 2008)
- Using a Butterfly Analogy to Explain the Hierarchy of Social Development (Sept. 2008)
- 5 Classroom Tips (Aug. 2008)
- Discipline Without Stress, Inc. (July 2008)
- Visualization (June 2008)
- Promoting Responsibility - Or How Not To (May 2008)
- Immaculate Perception (April 2008)
- A System Is Superior To Talent (Mar. 2008)
- To promote responsibility, Elicit Rather Than Impose (Feb. 2008)
- Understanding Boys (Jan. 2008)
- Descartes' Error: I think; therefore, I am (July 2003)
- Metacognition -- Thinking about Thinking Is Essential for Learning (June 2003)
- Listening Lessons -- How to Help Kids Learn and Comprehend (May 2003)
- Approaches of Outstanding Teachers (Apr 2003)
- Using a Discipline Approach to Promote Learning (Mar 2003)
- Curriculum, Instruction, Classroom Management, and Discipline (Feb 2003)
- Learning and Relationships, The two are inseparable (Jan 2003)
- Accountability in Schools (Dec 2002)
- Suggestions For Motivation (Nov 2002)
- Given Names - When NOT to Use Them and when TO Use Them (Oct 2002)
- The Power Of Hierarchies (Sept 2002)
- Use the Language You Want Learned (Aug 2002)
- Observations From Last Year (July 2002)
- How The Horse Whisperer Trains a Wild Mustang in 30 Minutes (June 2002)
- Using Breath Management for Better Listening and Voice Preservation (May 2002)
- Reducing Stress By Promoting Responsibility--Rather than by Attempting to Manipulate Behavior (Apr 2002)
- Rules Vs. Expectations (Mar 2002)
- How to Achieve 100 Per Cent Student Participation (Feb 2002)
- Positivity, Choice, and Reflection Exercise for Students (Jan 2002)
- Learning Climate (Dec 2001)
- Reflection and Self-Evaluation (pt 3) (Nov 2001)
- Reflection and Self-Evaluation (pt 2) (Sep 2001)
- Reflection and Self-Evaluation (pt 1) (May 2001)
- The Empowerment Of Choice (pt 2) (Apr 2001)
- The Empowerment Of Choice (pt 1) (Mar 2001)
- Power Of Positivity (pt 2) (Feb 2001)
- Power Of Positivity (Jan 2001)
- Home Assignments (Dec 2000)
- Collaboration is the Key (Nov 2000)
- Classroom Meetings (Aug 2000)
Dr. Marshall's website: http://www.MarvinMarshall.com
Email Dr. Marshall: email@example.com
© Dr. Marvin Marshall, 2001.