Responsive Classroom

Key Components

The Key Components of the Responsive Classroom Model are:  

  • Classroom Organization that provides active interest areas for students, space for student-created displays of work, and an appropriate mix of whole class, group and individual instruction.
  • Morning Meeting format that provides children the daily opportunity to practice greetings, conversation, sharing, and problem solving, and motivates them to meet the academic challenges of the day ahead.
  • Rules and Logical Consequences that are generated, modeled and role-played with the children and that become the cornerstone of classroom life.
  • Academic Choice for all children each in which they must take control of their own learning in some meaningful way, both individually and cooperatively.
  • Guided Discovery of learning materials, areas of the room, curriculum content and ways of behaving that moves children through a deliberate and careful introduction to each new experience.
  • Assessment and Reporting to parents that is an evolving process of mutual communication and understanding.


Methods include:

  • Building a Classroom Community
  • Modeling, Practicing and Role Playing Conflict Resolution
  • Appropriate Environment and Materials
  • Cooperative Learning
  • Independent Inquiry, Continuous Progress, Portfolio Assessment, Critical Contracts


We measure outcomes through:

  • Balance of teacher-directed instruction and child-initiated learning
  • Student responsibility for work and environment
  • Caring behavior
  • Problem solving ability both socially and academically
  • Parental involvement and understanding


The foundations of our practice are:

  • Knowledge of Child Development Theory
  • Principle of Teaching Social Skills
  • C.A.R.E.S. — Cooperation, Assertion, Responsibility, Empathy, Self-Control