Do you feel as though your students’ minds are all over the place sometimes? Or that your teacher-mind is scattered? Like you all, collectively, just need a little break to get back on track? If you said yes to any of these questions, check out our video blog for some ideas on how to keep your students, and yourself, motivated and engaged throughout the day!
Hi, I’m Dawn, from Learners Edge.
We expect middle and high school students’ brains to switch focus several times daily, as they move from class to class. Language arts for 40 minutes, then math, then music, and so on. You can help your students with these transitions by taking time to pause, regroup, and set the stage for the upcoming class.
First, you can play music as students enter your classroom. I chose music that students liked or a goofy theme song, if it was a special day. Passing time was just enough, once I dismissed the previous class, to start and stop the music before the bell.
Secondly, I began the class by taking a quick check. On a scale of one to five–one being challenging and five being outstanding–how’s your day going? Students would then, hold up the number of fingers to show their current assessment of the day.
Finally, once the bell rang, I invited students to take 30 seconds to a minute to just sit, close their eyes, and breathe. Some students expressed that this was a game changer for them. It helped so much to just have the time and space to regroup and recognize what they needed to do, and what to focus on.
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