Saturday, January 8, 2011

Book/DVD Review: 1-2-3 Magic for Teachers

As an elementary school teacher I know first hand how difficult it can be for any teacher to maintain a pleasant classroom and teaching atmosphere.  When I was in school preparing to become a teacher I never took an actual class-because there wasn't any- as to how a teacher could create a positive discipline program.  I was always told that I would learn along the way. It was not easy!

I was excited to be given the opportunity to review the book along with a the DVD: 1-2-3 Magic for Teachers: Effective Classroom Discipline Pre-K through Grade 8.  After having read the book, I wish I had had access to it during my initial stages as a teacher! At first glance, when I saw the title the first thing that came to mind was...Hmm, what are they talking about, magic!

This book, 1-2-3 Magic for Teachers: Effective Classroom Discipline Pre-K through Grade 8, gets you thinking, what can you as a teacher do to help improve your students learning experience.  We as teachers need to put more thought into the way we manage the classroom as well as how we should treat students when trying to keep order in the classroom.  Basically, you need to have a plan and can not just wing it as as the days go by.

This book gives teachers insight and tried, true and common sense techniques that will help get kids to start desirable/start behaviors and how to get them to stop undesirable/stop behaviors.

In order to get kids to disengage any stop behavior-talking out loud, throwing things around, etc- we should give them a count going from 1,2,3 pausing in between each number as to give the student time to think about what they are doing.  Numbers 1 & 2 represent individual, undesirable behaviors that we wish the students would stop doing and once you reach a count of 3, the student gets an immediate time-out. The length of time-out will vary according to the student's undesirable behavior or their age.

The key in making the 1-2-3 magic work lies within the teacher's attitude and not the counting.  Usually when adults get annoyed or angered by childrens' behavior-I am guilty if this-they tend to get emotional and over talk to children. Something, that I often did in my classroom for behaviors that really could have been resolved if I had just known about 1-2-3 Magic.

1-2-3 Magic also focuses on improving overall relationships between teachers/students and on improving and maintain students self-esteem.

The book is easy to follow and doesn't include anything technical in it, so no matter how experienced or not experienced teacher you are it'll be simple to understand. The only difficult thing would be to follow through in the classroom and stay true to this 1-2-3 Magic system.

After having read the book, I watched the DVD, which helped me visualize exactly what was being talked about in the book by observing actual classroom situations.   Although I love to read, I  liked watching the DVD. Having had the accompanying visuals gave me reassurance  that the ideas and images that went through my head while reading were exactly what was being described.

The DVD would be an ideal tool to use during Parent Night or a beginning of the school year Open House activity, where the parents could be introduced to the 1-2-3 Magic method.

I definitely recommend this book to undergrad students studying to become teachers, education grad-school students, newbie teachers, teacher's assistants, experienced teachers and former teachers turned SAHM who eventually will go back to teaching-if I had been saying that it would have been a mouthful...anyone who works in academic environments where young children up to 8th grade are involved.

Parents, make sure you know what kind of classroom management techniques your kids' teachers use and if you notice that it's not working then recommend 123 Magic or better yet give it to the teacher as a gift!  I know I would have loved if a parent gave me this book or at least recommended it.

If you want to find out more about this awesome teacher must-have then go to:

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Tomoson Product review & giveaway Disclosure.


  1. My sister could use this. I am going to let her know about your great review!

  2. It would have been nice to have this when I was teaching 16 yrs ago! ;) Thanks for spreading the word. People need to remember that one technique doesn't work for all kids!

  3. My cousin is studying to become a teacher and would love this book! Great review now I know what to get her for her birthday next week!

  4. This sounds like a great book. As a middle school teacher, I could use all the help I can get! ;)

  5. I teach too, and the more I think about it, it more I love the pauses. They calm you down so you're not over-emotional and they can get the student's attention too. Why do we think that when they are engaged in negative behaviors that they are still listening and present? They need the pauses too. I'm going to look into this, our school is always looking for good resources.

  6. Sounds fantastic!
    Thanks for the intro.
    Short listing for my sister who is a new mom!

  7. what a great book from a great series- we used 1-2-3 magic with my 5 year old for a while. i have a few teacher friends i'm sending this link to!!

  8. Thanks for the great responses!

    Everything in the book made so much sense when I tried to compare it to the way I used to manage my students. On many occasions I used to think that if I talked to my students-5th/6th grade- that they would react, but the truth is that it didn't. Some reacted well, but the ones who were out of place really didn't care. Children do understand actions better than words. I think once you read the book and decide to use the technique you have to be firm and go through it.

    The book also has a companion DVD.

  9. We're your newest friends from MBC via the Follow Each Other In Blogs group! Swing by our little bloggy world, you're always welcome!

    your newest friends,
    koco & viking

  10. That for sharing this! What a great book!Thanks for joining us at Making Friends Monday! Have a great week! ~HEather


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