"This Has to Be Family": Humanizing Classroom Management in Urban Schools

Document Type



Published in: Journal of Classroom Interaction, Vol. 44, No. 1, 2009.


Classroom management in urban schools is frequently steeped in mythology. Students are seen as difficult and disrespectful, needing highly structured discipline policies in order to function. However, a different reality exists. This study looks at the way well-respected teachers in urban schools utilize their classroom space, manage their students and build community in culturally responsive ways. Through this study, I explore how teachers break with the norms of traditional management approaches and instead focus on setting up classroom communities that are relevant to and respectful of the children they teach.