Etiquette refers to the set of conventional rules of personal behaviour in polite society, usually in the form of an ethical code that outlines the expected and accepted social behaviours that accord with the norms observed by a society or a social group.
Etiquette in simpler words is defined as good behaviour which distinguishes human beings from animals. It is a code of conduct, a method for dealing with how people interact with each other based on respect and accepted norms of behavior.
BASIC TIPS FOR PROPER CLASSROOM ETIQUETTE
1. ARRIVE TO CLASS ON TIME
Arriving to class on time is the right thing to do. Regularly arriving late to class is a wrong act that might appear as disrespect to the teacher whether you mean to disrespect the teacher or not. Arriving early to class requires you to wake up on time and prepare for school, your school bag should be arranged the night before your class and not in the morning of that day. Avoid situations that would make you come late to class and if you must arrive late, remember to enter the classroom quietly without causing noise that might disrupt the class.
2. TURN OFF YOUR CELL PHONE
Turning off your cell phone in class is the right thing to do except in situations where you are expecting a very important call or text, do not receive or make calls in the classroom. If your phone does ring, do not receive the call and ensure you apologize to your teacher immediately.
3. AVOID EATING/DRINKING IN CLASS
Eating and drinking in class is extremely wrong and might not be tolerated by your teacher. Bringing food to class is never allowed in many classroom buildings, so you are not only displaying poor etiquette but actually breaking a rule. If you must eat or drink in class, make sure it is approved by your teacher.
4. CONTRIBUTE TO THE CLASS DISCUSSION WHEN APPROPRIATE
Teachers appreciate interactive classes a lot, this shows there is a flow of understanding between the teacher and the students. It is good to make comments, suggestions and contributions at the appropriate time. Never interrupt the teacher or another student, don’t dominate the discussion and always give others the chance to speak too.
5. AVOID SIDE CONVERSATIONS
Avoid side conversations with your fellow classmates because the noise distracts both the teacher and other students. If you must have a conversation with your friends, ensure you do that before or after the class but avoid doing so during class.
The good thing about avoiding side conversation is that you would be free to learn well.
6. ADDRESS YOUR TEACHER PROPERLY
Always address your teacher properly because it is the right thing to do. Most teachers find it insulting when they are not addressed properly by their students. Never call your teacher by his/her name even if they are very friendly with you, it shows that you respect their friendliness with you.
7. BE ATTENTIVE IN CLASS
Arriving on time to class requires you to stay actively engaged in class. Full attention is required when a teacher is standing in front of the class, never flaunt your boredom or disinterest in the class by doing your left over assignment, reading a novel, playing games or sleeping, as this may appear to be rude.
8. STAY FOR THE ENTIRE CLASS
If a class is scheduled for one hour, it is required of you to be in the class for one hour. If it is important you leave the classroom before the end of the class, ensure you inform the teacher ahead of time and only leave when the request is granted, this shows you respect and value the teacher. Do not make it a regular habit to always come up with excuses for leaving before the end of the class.
9. AVOID SIGNALING OR SENDING SIGNS THAT CLASS TIME IS UP
Teachers are sometimes fond of taking extra time aside the actual time assigned for the class but never make it your duty to start sending distracting signs/signals to the teacher as this may irritate the teacher. It is rude to tell the teacher that class is over when he/she is still teaching, if you feel it is too much, discuss it with him/her privately after the class and not during class time.
10. INFORM YOUR TEACHER WHEN YOU INTEND TO MISS CLASS
It is a good thing to inform your teacher on time before missing a class, try to contact your teacher and inform him/her of your absence, stating clearly the reason for this. You may be privileged to get lecture notes from the teacher whenever you return. When alerting your teacher about having to miss a class, do not begin the conversation with awful questions like: “are we doing anything important in the next class”.
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