Education | Communication in the Classroom
G203 | 5605 | Johanna Lantz

Syllabus Disclaimer: As the instructor of this course, I reserve the
right to make changes to the syllabus as needed to facilitate
instruction. I will inform students of any changes at the earliest
date possible in class, via email, or on Oncourse.

Required Reading

„XMorse, P.S. & Ivey, A.E. (1996). Face to Face: Communication and
Conflict Resolution in the Schools. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press

„XG203 Readings on ERESERVES:

Course Description
Communication is an essential human activity that pervades every
aspect of living.  If you think about it, we spend most of our day
engaging in some form of communication. As such, learning to
effectively communicate and to understand the explicit and implicit
messages of others is an important endeavor.

Communication is a particularly important tool for teachers. Teachers
need to be able to not only impart academic knowledge, but must also
learn how to use communication to support the emotional, social, and
intellectual development of students from diverse backgrounds. They
must also learn to understand how communication is impacted by
ecological systems. In other words, styles of communication depend on
the context and are heavily influenced by cultural norms.

In this course, students will study counseling theories and
techniques for application to teaching. Students learn methods of
building community in the classroom, and ways to encourage student
participation and respect for others. Students learn techniques and
attitudes of group dynamics and leadership. Other topics of
communication that will be covered include: conflict resolution,
active listening, and parent-teacher communication.

We will explore the topic of communication as it pertains to
education through a variety of means including reading, writing,
discussion and examination. In addition, active participation is a
crucial component of this course and students will be required to
apply many of the concepts learned in class through a variety of
experiential activities. Through an open and supportive environment,
students will be encouraged to pursue self-exploration, to take
risks, to empathize with fellow students, and to take responsibility
for his/her own and othersˇ¦ learning.

Course Objectives

1.Students will learn about different contexts for communication from
an ecological systems perspective.

2.Students will learn basic communication skills that can be used in
virtually any communicative context.

3.Students will understand that all behavior is communication and
will learn how to interpret and manage challenging behaviors.

4.Students will learn to consider and understand the needs diverse

5.Students will learn how teachers communicate and collaborate with
other teachers, school administrators, professionals and with members
of their studentˇ¦s family and community.

Important Notes
Students with Disabilities: Students with visual, hearing, physical,
and/or learning disabilities, which may require modification of
curriculum, instruction, or assessment, should contact the instructor
as soon as possible.  I wish to fully include persons with
disabilities in this course.  Modifications and accommodations will
be made after the student has presented documentation indicating
qualification through services from Disabled Student Services.  See
the Handbook for Students with Disabilities for eligibility

Writing Services: Producing quality written work is a significant
factor in college academics and your future lives as professionals.
If you feel that you need additional assistance with your writing
skills, please utilize Writing Tutorial Services (WTS) at Becoming a skilled writer
is a lifelong processˇXWTS can help to make sure that you are on the
right path

Academic Misconduct: Cheating, plagiarism, sexual harassment,
racial/gender/sexual orientation discrimination, slurs, or any other
student misconduct that adversely affects the learning or safety of
others students will not be tolerated in my classroom or on this
campus.  If any student becomes aware of any of these activities, or
feels that they have been the victim of harassment, discrimination,
or any other act of malicious intent, please contact me.  For more
information about this topic, please see: http://campus

Course Assignments (585 points total)

My Ecological System (25 points): All of us live in an environmental
context that influences how we live and communicate. In order to get
to know each other better, each class member will create a poster of
his/her ecological system (according to Bronfenbrennerˇ¦s model, which
will be discussed in class). More explanation of this assignment will
be given on the second class day, January 21st, and it will be due on
Monday February 2nd.

Reaction Papers (40 points each, 80 points total): Research indicates
that associating information with oneˇ¦s own experience and existing
knowledge facilitates learning and makes content more meaningful for
the learner. Therefore, you will complete 2 papers, 4-5 pages in
length. Both papers will include three sections: 1.) a summary of two
readings that were assigned, plus two readings that you find on your
own 2.) a reflection on personal experiences 3.) a description of how
you will use this information once you become a teacher. These papers
will be described in detail in a separate document. Reaction Paper 1
is due on February 23rd, and Reaction Paper 2 is due on March 31st.

Final Expanded Reaction Paper (100 points): On April 28th, you will
turn in a final reaction paper. This paper will expand on a reaction
paper you have turned in previously. This paper must include an
additional literature review citing at least 6 additional references
on the topic. A grading rubric and further details will be provided
at a later date.

Midterm Examination (100 points): On March 8th, there will be a
multiple-choice test on your understanding of course material. This
test will include information from readings, class lectures, and
videos. There will be no surprises on the test. We will review what
will be on the test on March 3rd and a study guide will be provided.

Collaborative Inquiry and Teaching Project (100 points total): Groups
of 4-5 students will be responsible for researching a topic and
teaching it to the class. During the second week of class, I will
pass around a list of topics that are to be covered and you will sign
up to be part of a particular presentation group. Each group will
present for 50 minutes and provide 10-15 minutes at the end of class
for questions and class evaluations. Group members should share
equally presentation time and preparation responsibilities. Although
the information conveyed in your presentation is very important, the
methods used to teach the topic to the class should also be a primary
focus. More information about this assignment will follow in a
separate handout.

Applied Skills Practice Assignments (20 points each, 60 points total)
This class is designed to teach skills that you will need to apply
once you become a teacher; therefore, we will spend class time
practicing the skills we are learning through readings, class
lectures and discussion, and videos. Assignments will be completed
primarily during class time in oral or written form. Occasionally
assignments may need to be finished at home and turned in the next
class meeting. Three applied skills practice days are planned with 20
points given each day for participation and completion of
assignments. Attendance on applied skills practice days is mandatory
to receive the maximum number of points. Those who are absent on
applied skills practice days without an official excuse (e.g.,
documentation of serious illness from health center) can only receive
a maximum of 10 points for completion of assignments.

Applied Skills Final (50 points)
The Applied Skills Final is a parent-teacher conference that will
occur on April 26th. You will be required to demonstrate that you can
apply the basic listening and influencing skills, can effectively
communicate behavioral concerns to parents, and can engage in pre-
conference planning activities. A pre-conference planning worksheet
will be given to you on April 21st. This worksheet will be due on the
day of the conference, April 26th.

Quizzes (10 points each, 50 point total)
Five quizzes will be given during the semester to test your
comprehension of the assigned readings. These quizzes will be broad
rather than requiring knowledge of specific information. They will
just cover the main points of the reading.

Class Participation (20 points total)
Active participation is a requirement of this course. This means
participating in class discussions and in small work groups, as well
as coming to class prepared to discuss assigned readings.

Extra Credit (up to 15 points)
Opportunities for extra credit will be available throughout the
semester. You may write an extra Reaction Paper for 15 points extra
credit. Individuals who do not turn in a required Reaction Paper will
not be allowed to write an extra credit Reaction Paper.

Course Policies and Expectations

1.) Attendance.  You will be allowed 3 unexcused absences. Any
absences after that will result in a deduction of 5 points per class
absence. Remember absences on applied skills practice days result in
large point deductions!

2.) Email. An email account is required for this course. The
instructor will not respond to emails after 5 pm or on weekends.

Information pertaining to the course will be posted on Oncourse and
will not be emailed individually to students. This includes
assignments and announcements. You must check Oncourse regularly for
updates and announcements. In addition, handouts, Power Point slides,
and other materials will be distributed through Oncourse and not in
class. You must download and bring these materials to class on the
assigned day. Individuals who do not participate regularly on
Oncourse will have points taken off of their participation grade.

4.) Late work.  Late work will be penalized 5% per day, including

5.) Expectations of written work.  Written expression is an important
form of communication. All written work (except in-class assignments)
must meet the following requirements:


„ĎNew Times Roman 12 pt or Arial 11 pt


„ĎWhite paper, black ink

„Ď1-inch margins


„ĎInclude page numbers, name and section number of student, and title.

„ĎSpelling and grammar must be correct, so edit carefully. Deductions
will be taken for such errors.

„ĎUse of slang words should be avoided.

You are encouraged to seek help from Writing Tutorial Services. Call
855-6738 to set up an appointment. If the instructor feels that a
student requires this service, she will make the appropriate

6.) Grading Formula:

A+	98-100%
A	94-97%
A-	90-93%
B+	87-89%
B	84-86%
B-	80-83%
C+	77-79%
C	74-76%
C-	70-73%
D+	67-69%
D	64-66
D-	60-63%
F	Below 60%


Planned Schedule of Course
(Subject to change)

M 01/12	 Introduction to course 		
W 01/14	Community Building		
M 01/19	Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
W 01/21	Contexts of communication:
Ecological systems theory	Scott (1990) Ecological Impact on
Human Development and Change	Lecture

Explanation of poster assignment
M 1/26	Multiple roles of teachers

The First Year Video 	Kottler & Kottler  (2000)
Chapter 1

	Watch video

W 01/28	The First Year (contˇ¦d)
Morse & Barnett (1994) A Survey of College Studentsˇ¦ Reactions to
Their K-12 Teachers and Schools
First Year Discussion Questions
M 02/02	Ecological systems presentations

		My Ecological System poster due
W 02/04	Communication Theory	Rogers (1969) The Interpersonal
Relationship in the Facilitation of Learning

Cooper (1995) Classroom Communication	Lecture
M 02/09	Communication Skills: The Basic Listening Sequence	Morse
& Ivey (1996) Chapter 4

Locke & Ciechalski (1995) Communication Techniques for Teachers
	Applied skills practice day 1
W 02/11	Communication Skills: Nonverbal Behavior 	
Mottet & Richmond (2002) Student Nonverbal Communication and Its
influence on Teachers and Teaching

Other reading TBA on Oncourse and posted on ereserves

Line-up by age
M 02/16	Communication Skills: Attending, questioning, and influencing
	Morse & Ivey (1996) Chapters 1-3, 5, 6.

	Applied Skills Practice Day 2
W 02/18	Collaborative Inquiry Group Requirements and Group Meetings
	Collaborative Inquiry Requirement Handouts (Download from
OncourseˇXit is under syllabus tab)	Quiz on Collaborative Inquiry
M 02/23	Behavior as Communication: An Introduction to Functional
Behavioral Assessment 	Ryan, Halsey, Matthews (2003). Using
Functional Assessment to Promote Desirable Student Behavior in Schools
	Reaction Paper 1 due

W 02/25	Classroom Management: Communication Strategies to Support
Positive Classroom Behavior	Walker, Shea, & Bauer (2004). Methods
of Increasing Behavior
Nakamura (2000). Discipline Styles and the Goals of Behavior
M 03/01	Classroom Management: Alternative Strategies	Walker, Shea,
& Bauer (2004).
Methods of Decreasing Behavior
Nakamura (2000).
Rules, Consequences, and Controlling the Physical Env.	Applied
Skills Practice Day 3
W 03/03	Test Review		Test Review Game
M 03/08	Midterm Exam	

W 03/10	

Multi-cultural Issues in Education: Race and SES	Sheets
(1996). Urban Classroom Conflict: Student-Teacher Perception

Gougis (1986). The Effects of Prejudice and Stress on the Academic
Performance of Black-Americans
	Post-it Note
M 03/15	Spring Break
No class		
W 03/15	Spring Break
No class		
M 03/22	Multicultural Issues in Education: Strategies	Nieto (2000).
Multicultural Education in Practice.	Eye Color Activity
W 03/24	Gender in Education
Guest Speaker: Brittany Pendry	Reading TBA	Lecture
M 03/29	Collaborative Inquiry Project-
Inclusion	Readings TBA by group presenting	Evaluation of
group presentation (Download form from Oncourse)
W 03/31	Circles of Support
Guest Speaker: Kim Davis	Davis (2003) Who are we working for
anyway? (class handout)

Davis (2002) ˇ§I wake up for my dream!ˇ¨ (class handout)	Reaction
Paper 2
M 04/05	Collaborative Inquiry ProjectˇX Learning in Groups
	Readings TBA by group presenting	Evaluation of group
presentation (Download form from Oncourse)
04/07	Collaborative Inquiry ProjectˇX Conflict Resolution
	Readings TBA by group presenting	Evaluation of group
presentation (Download form from Oncourse)
04/12	Collaborative Inquiry ProjectˇXCommunicating during Crisis
Situations 	Readings TBA by group presenting	Evaluation of
group presentation
(Download form from Oncourse)
04/14	Home/School Communication and Collaboration
	Gestwicki (2000). Informal Communication with Parents
	Discussion questions

04/19	Teacher to Teacher Communication and Collaboration

	Hollingsworth (2001). We Need to Talk	Lecture

W 04/21	Parent- Teacher Conferences	Reading TBA, will be posted
on Oncourse and available on ereserves.

M 04/26	Parent- Teacher Conferences

		Applied Skills Final
W 4/28	Wrap up day and evaluations		Final: Expanded
Reaction Paper due