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Jerome Freiberg

Cooperative Management and Cooperative Discipline









Who is Jerome Freiberg?

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Not much information is given on Jerome Freiberg's life, but what I did find was Jerome Freiberg was once a middle school teacher in Providence, Rhode Island. He was also at one time a high school teacher in Chester, Pennsylvania and in Philadelphia. The interesting thing about when he was working as a middle school teacher in Providence, Rhode Island, was that he was also a volunteer teacher at a maximum-security prison at night. Many of the inmates were former students at the middle school where at the time he was teaching. (JS)

Jerome Freiberg is the pioneer developer of the Consistency Management and Cooperative Discipline, which is a comprehensive, research-developed and third party evaluated instructional management program that includes four district components. Jerome Freiberg is the author of Universal Teaching Strategies. Other books by him include Perceiving, Behaving, Becoming: Lesson Learned, School Climate, Freedom to Learn, Beyond Behaviorism, and Learning Guide: Those Who Can, Teach. (JS)



What did he believe?

Jerome Freiberg believed that the Consistency Management and Cooperative Discipline program was designed to help students prepare for success, achieve self-discipline, and develop responsibility. He thought this was accomplished through an emphasis on prevention rather than intervention, shared responsibilities between teacher and student, cooperative discipline, increased communication with parents, and effective instruction. He also believed that that CMCD provided a sustainable message for everyone who works with children. This would include administrators, teachers, specialists, aides, cafeteria workers, and bus drivers. The main components of CMCD are prevention, caring, cooperation, organization, and community. Jerome Freiberg believes that teachers have many options for involving students in rule making. The teacher can write five or six rules and then have the students develop them more fully and then have everyone sign the poster. He says another alternative is to make a classroom constitution. (JS)



Why is he important today?

Jerome Freiberg is important today because we still use his Consistency Management and Cooperative Discipline program and methods in our classrooms. Schools are becoming less and less teacher focused and more and more teacher-student collaboration focused. They are beginning to focus more on prevention rather than intervention, shared responsibilities between teacher and student, cooperative discipline, increased communication with parents, and effective instruction. All of these methods are part of Jerome Freiberg's Consistency Management and Cooperative Discipline program. Children are now more a part of the inner workings of the classroom. Jerome's concept of cooperative discipline has helped spark student interest in taking responsibility within the classroom community. This concept allows all students to become leaders. They are partners and stakeholders in the classroom. Students help write and create a classroom constitution and establish job responsibilities. Classroom management has now become a collaborative effort rather than just the teacher's responsibility. Jerome's program has leveled the playing field in the education world. He has opened our eyes to a new way of thinking about classroom management. He has brought us out of the age where the teacher is the supreme dictator of the classroom. Jerome has shown us that the most effective classroom management strategy is collaboration. (ES)


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What are some practical ways to apply his approach in a classroom?


Some practical ways to apply Jerome's approach in the classroom would be student leadership roles. Each student should hold some type of responsibility within the classroom community. Whether it be sharpening pencils, taking out the trash, organizing the books, passing out papers, and so on. Students should feel as if they are part of the classroom as a whole. A student leadership role allows students to become connected to the classroom and gives them a sense of responsibility. Another way you could incorporate Jerome's approach in the classroom would be to have the students help set up their own classroom constitution. This principal focuses on the idea of prevention rather than intervention. Teachers should work with students to write up a set of classroom rules and disciplinary actions so that from the beginning students are aware of the rules and there consequences. Allowing students to have a say in the set up of the classroom makes them more aware of the rules, and they take more responsibility for their actions. Teachers should emphasize the importance of creating a caring community of support in the classroom. (ES)


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Citations:

Summit, L.B. (2009). London Behaviour Summit 2009. (Behaviour4Life, Editor) from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOPneOzsItE (JS)
Freiberg, H.J. Consistency Management & Cooperation Discipline from http://www.findyouthinfo.org/programdetails.aspx?pid=316 (JS)
Jones, Vern and Louise. Comprehensive Classroom Management. New Jersey: Pearson, Merrill, 2010. (ES)