As we approach November 11, we focus on peace around the world. Children often feel that they can't do much to make a difference in the world. This is where we can help them to understand that they are the key to peace.
In the movie Pay It Forward, a class was challenged to come up with a change they could make in the world. This is when the idea of paying it forward was made popular. One boy's idea had the potential to change the world and make it a better place for many people.
Doing acts of kindness is a perfect way for children to help make positive changes in the world. Friendship is one way of sharing peace and spreading positive feelings. What better way to remember those who fought to give us peace than to spread peace to others through friendship.
As we get closer to Christmas, thinking about giving instead of getting is another way that we can spread goodwill and cheer to others around us. We have been blessed with many things. Here is hoping that we can help to bless others by sharing peace and kindness.
Classroom management is something that everyone needs to focus on when starting a new year. There are many different ideas and approaches being used now, so it is important to find what works for you and your students.
Three years ago, I was introduced to Whole Brain Teaching. I saw a few blog posts about its use in the classroom and I decided to find out more about it. I read the book Whole Brain Teaching For Challenging Kids during that summer and I decided to begin implementing some of the components in my classroom.
I decided to begin with the classroom rules. I created a set of posters to use in my room. I made some changes to rule 1 because I found that my students were able to follow directions quickly, but they sometimes didn't focus on following them correctly. I also changed rule 3 for my students because I didn't require them to raise their hands to leave their seats.
I decided to make a variety of different themes for the rules so they could fit in with the seasons, sports, and classroom decor. One bundle uses a cursive font as well. The rules didn't change, just the themes. Click on the images to get a copy for yourself.
I also introduced the concepts of Class/Yes and Teach/Okay. I was amazed at how quickly my students responded to these ideas and began to model them. It was interesting to see how I was able to break information into small chunks for them to teach each other. I didn't think I would be able to do this! I am so glad that I tried. The kids liked being the teacher and everyone was accountable.
I did create a scoreboard, but I found that I didn't use it very much. My class didn't have very many challenging behaviors, so they followed the rules most of the time without the board.
There are so many other elements to Whole Brain Teaching that I didn't get a chance to try out, but if I hadn't recently retired, I would definitely incorporate them into my teaching.
Head on over to the whole brain teaching website for more information. I would strongly recommend checking it out and reading the book. Even if you add just some of the elements into your teaching, it does make a difference.
About Me Charlene Sequeira
I am a wife, mother of 4, grandmother of 9, and a retired primary and music teacher. I love working with kids and continue to volunteer at school and teach ukulele.