Jacob Kounin was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1912. He graduated in 1939 with doctorate degree from Iowa State University. Kounin began his work as an educational psychologist at Wayne State University in 1946. Kounin wanted to focus on integrating learning and discipline in the classroom because prior theorists kept the two completely separated.
Kounin's work is summarized in his book Discipline and Group Management in Classrooms. His work was done primarily in the 1970s. Kounin was originally doing research on how a teacher handles misbehavior after it occurred, but he quickly realized that it was more important to study how the teacher was handling the class from the very beginning. Overall Kounin wanted to focus on preventative classroom management techniques.
Kounin's studies took place over 5 years. He completed his observations by studying college, high school, and elementary classrooms. He based the bulk of his research and conclusions by videotaping over 80 elementary classrooms.
Kouin felt that:
Organization & planning prior to teaching mattered Behavior of teacher was important Keeping students highly involved constantly
Teacher or Student Centered?
Kounin does express that in order to minimize behavior the students must be actively engaged in the learning environment. The teacher is the ultimate decision maker and is in complete control of the class. If the teacher can control the class and use Kounin's strategies to prevent most behavior is when I believe it shifts back to the students more.
6 Key Ideas
Ripple Effect: A teacher corrects the behavior of one student and others will follow. Leads to a more positive atmosphere.
Withitness: Teacher's ability to be aware of the classroom at all times: *aware of diferent sights & sounds *all students are in eyesight in the classroom arrangement *scan room periodically *do not turn back on the whole class when helping one student *handle misbehavior immediately instead of avoiding it
Overlapping: (multi-tasking) teachers can handle 2 or more tasks at 1 time.
Effective transistions: smooth & effective between to activities
Momentum: teacher needs to be in charge of force & flow of lesson. Pull the students along at the teacher's selected pace.
Smoothness: time of task is at ultimate high with minimal distractions to slowing down the lesson, which will lead to a smooth lesson for all.