Showing posts with label Classroom Management. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Classroom Management. Show all posts

Monday, November 4, 2013

Tracer Spacers

I shared this last month over on the Organized Classroom Blog.  I wanted to share it here too!

Teachers are always looking for ways in which their classroom supplies can stretch a little further or serve a duel purpose.  Yep, that's me!!   I have seen those really cute little spacer guys that help kiddos with their writing and make the perfect space, but of course I multi-task, multi-purpose, multi-anything really.  So......I invented the Tracer-Spacer.  Okay, I really didn't invent the pen, but maybe the word.  Heheheheh

At the beginning of our sentence writing process, we do a lot of tracing and copying to work on letter placement and spacing.  Our Tracer-Spacer comes in very handy.  We trace the sentence and then flip the pen around for a sentence spacer when we write.

The kids love the fact that they can pick a different color every time they trace, and I love it because it is so fun to say!!  Say it one time to them and it sticks.  Think about your classroom.  What else could serve a duel purpose?  How could you reuse something in your room?

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Getting Ready for Back to School and A Freebie

Well, it is that time again Back To School !!!!!  Are you ready??  Our first day is August 20th, and the planning has officially begun.  Yeah!!  Before I really start anything, I like to take some time to reflect.  I think about last year, the previous years, the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between.  lol

Two of the things I think that have worked really well in my classroom are our Line Up Song and our Quiet Signal.  (Classroom Management and Procedures)  I can't wait to share these with you.

This will be my 5th year teaching kindergarten, and I truly believe that we can learn something new every year.  Believe it or not, how to line up was one of the biggest changes/challenges I had when I moved from 6th to Kindergarten.  Wowwzers!!!  In kindergarten there is a line leader, a caboose, and a door holder.   So......... I figured out how to get everyone to the line, but now, how do I get them quiet and ready to walk in the hall.  Our kiddos walk with hips and lips - one finger on your lip and one hand on your hip!  This keeps our hands from touching others, the walls, or anything else.  So, with the help of a friend, we now have a fun little Line Up Song jingle to sing/say while we are getting ready to walk down the hall.   Click on the picture to download this great little freebie poster!!

Now, our Quite Signal!  How do I get the attention of 20 little 5 year olds who are busy at work??  Our principal uses a raised hand for our building wide quiet signal.  The entire building knows that when they see a teacher or administrator raise his/her hand, they need to raise their hand as well and get quite.  This can be a little difficult for 5 year olds with their attention going in every which direction.  So, I decided not only to give them the visual clue (my hand raised), but an auditory and kinesthetic clue as well.  It takes us a few days to really figure it out, and lots of praise, but when we's great!!  I also made picture clue cards for our classroom wall.  (Which, once they learn all four letters in the word STOP, they are totally excited that they can actually read the word!  :)  I clap 5 times, say S...T...clap twice....say O...P  and we all end quiet with our hands in the air!!  YEAH!!!!!  (I had the blank cards up, but this year I decided to make them colored to match my classroom decorations.)  These STOP Signal cards are available on TpT in color and black and white. Click on the picture below to find them.
Click below to hear how our classroom Quiet Signal.  Click on the picture above to hear it on You Tube.  (Of course you could do any clapping rhythm, this is just what worked for us!)

And I am sure like almost all of us out there, there are areas that we really feel we want to change/improve.  One of the areas that I still need some help reorganizing/figuring out ...... is my 30 minute independent center time.  We are a Title 1 building, so this is also our Tier time.  I know what activities I want them to do, but it is the organization part I need a little help with.  Like how to rotate them, keeping track of who went where and who did what!!!  Help!!  If you have any great resources or ideas, please let me know!!  Thanks, and I hope you have a great year too.

"An intelligent heart acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge." Proverbs 18:15

Freebie Fridays

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Whole Group Instruction & Accountability

Whole group instruction is a necessary part of a teacher's day, but I want to make sure all of my students are participating, actively engaged and held accountable for what they are learning.  To ensure this I use answer cards.  :o)

With a few questions and the correct card, I can do a quick check for topic understanding.

In this Whole Group Answer Cards set,  I have included Yes/No, Fact/Opinion, True/False and ./? cards.  I continually update this set with different cards when needed and have them printed on different colors of paper for easy classroom use.    These cards can actually be used in any setting where individual student accountability is the goal!!  :o)

Click here to find these on TpT.

How could you use these in your classroom?  What other card combinations can you think of?

"For where two or three come together in my name, I am there with them." Matthew 18:20

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Singing, Dancing and Classroom Management

"Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing." Psalm 100:2

I love to sing and dance (that is why I teach a dance class too), so this is how we start every morning.  We begin with the Alphabet Song from Sing, Spell, Read & Write, and the next song is always a surprise.  :0)  I have about 15 different songs with routines that I rotate.   The one in this picture is Here We Go Loopty Loo from the Learning Station.  Dancing and singing are such a fun way to get the wiggles out and prepare for our day.  (I might have to videotape my actions!)

Next.....when I am ready to start talking and teaching, I am ready to start! :0)  No one wants to waste time telling kids to stop talking, turn around, etc.   An 11 year old is very different than a 5 year old, and I quickly realized I needed a plan for this when I made the move from 6th grade to Kindergarten.  So, I found another song.  I use The More We Get Together, by Jim Stone, for any "clean up" time in the classroom.  The kids recognize this song and know that when they hear it, they are to clean up what ever we have out and meet me at the tables.

Finally, use songs for procedures whenever you can.  I have two songs I play for transition time to our squares.  Our squares are where we have calendar time, story time, direct instruction time, or large group activities.  The kids know that when the songs stop, no matter what time of the day it is, they must be giving me 5 things.....with out me asking for them.....sitting crisscross, hands in their lap, eyes on me, mouth closed and ears listening!  Wow, amazing, and I don't have to say a single thing!  For this I use Special Me and Miss Sue from Dr. Jean.  The important thing to remember is, put the songs you use at the bottom of your playlist or make a separate playlist for them.  You don't want to be running over to push stop when everyone is ready to go and listening!  :0)

God says with joyful service to the Lord....use have put me here.  Help me to serve you in this and any situation with joy on my heart!