Upholding Norms

Learners understand and uphold norms to maintain physical and emotional safety and predictability in the classroom.


Articulate the vision and norms of the environment, as well as their role in them

Evidence of Learner Behaviors

  • Identify the shared vision and Code of Cooperation in the learning environment

  • Describe how the learners built the vision and how they use and update it

  • Give examples of how the vision is related to their current learning task

  • Give examples of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that are expected in their learning environment

Questions to Ask Learners

  • How did you and your class create your shared vision/Code of Cooperation?

  • How do you use the vision and Code?

  • What kinds of SOPs does your environment have? How were they created?

  • How does this environment's Code and vision apply to your learning?

Explain why norms matter in their learning experience

Evidence of Learner Behaviors

  • When asked, describe how Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and other norms help them learn

  • Connect a specific piece of the Code of Cooperation to their current learning task

Questions to Ask Learners

  • Why do you think SOPs and your Code of Cooperation are important?

  • How do they apply to making sure you have positive learning experiences?

  • How do they connect to the task you are working on now?

  • Do you think your classmates feel the same way?

Offer support and guidance to peers when norms should be used

Evidence of Learner Behaviors

  • Without prompting by the learning facilitator, they correct a peer and reference the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) or Code of Cooperation (e.g., a learner is running and another learner stops them to reference the "no running" norm)

  • Share with peers and/or the learning facilitator when they think an SOP or part of the Code of Cooperation needs to be improved or adjusted

Questions to Ask Learners

  • If you saw a classmate not following an SOP or part of the Code of Cooperation, what would you do?

  • Do you often find yourself helping classmates with the SOPs or parts of the Code?

  • Have you ever offered or suggested changes to the SOPs or Code to make them better?

Demonstrate feeling comfortable in the environment

Evidence of Learner Behaviors

  • Learners demonstrate ease during transitions and uses of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

  • Learners share ideas about the Code of Cooperation or SOPs when they are being used

Questions to Ask Learners

  • How do you feel as a learner in this environment?

  • Do you know what kinds of activities and learning experiences to expect?

  • Do you feel comfortable talking to your learning facilitator about concerns you have in this class?


When learning facilitators have clear routines, procedures, and norms of interaction, learners feel safe and supported. When all members of the classroom community understand and uphold these norms, learners are better able to engage authentically in learning.


Learners are at their best when learning facilitators provide safe spaces for learners. Safe spaces provide psychological, emotional, and intellectual security so that learners can be fully present and focus on learning.

Educator Actions

Learning facilitators promote an instructional environment that is physically and emotionally safe and predictable.

CSTPs: 2.3, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7

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The Shared Vision and Code of Cooperation process is an ongoing way to build and foster norms! Revisit your Code and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) with learners to reflect on how they are working in your learning environment.

When learners feel they have had an ongoing voice in the norms of the learning environment, they feel connected and comfortable in their learning experiences!


  • Maintain a physical space that has a clean and orderly arrangement and helpful visual anchors to communicate community values, vision, and norms (P)

  • Co-create clear behavioral and intellectual expectations (P/F)

  • Provide learners with opportunities to rehearse and internalize routines (P/F)

  • Model a positive attitude and commitment to values and norms* (P/F)

  • Intervene calmly and predictably when norms are violated (F)

  • Establish clear routines for starting class (including entering and tardiness) and ending class (including reflection and assessment) (P/F)

  • Support learners in articulating the reasons the norms exist and why learners would choose to follow or not follow a norm in a given situation given that learner’s values (P/F)

  • Acknowledge and celebrate learners when they uphold norms without educator prompting (F)

P = planned F = facilitated spontaneously