Teachers' Commands and their Role in Preschool Classrooms

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Many aspects of teacher competency have been previously examined, particularly a teacher's ability to give commands effectively. Teachers' instructions to students within the classroom, aid in the acquisition of both the students' academic and nonacademic skills. Teachers' commands promote verbal and social skills, and facilitate appropriate classroom behavior. In this respect, compliance to teacher commands is an integral aspect of classroom behavior. Naturally occurring levels of teacher commands were studies across three ages of preschool classrooms; toddlers, 3-4 year olds, and 4-6 year olds. Commands were identified through a review of the literature in coordination with preschool classroom observation and observation protocol development. Levels of fifteen different identifiable types of commands were measured across six different types of preschool activities. Results showed that there is a clear difference in the rates of commands across age levels and activities, and that specific types of commands occur at significantly higher percentages in differing age level preschool classrooms. Types of commands elicited by teachers and the rate of command elicitation are seen as having implications for classroom compliance levels.



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Electronic Journal of Research in Educational Psychology