Saturday, August 30, 2014

Weekend Warriors {Back to School Cool, Day 1}

Welcome back to another edition of Weekend Warriors!  This weekend, my gal pals and I are bringing you lots of great back to school tips.


This is probably the busiest time of year for a teacher.  There is so much to think about!  But, I think we would all agree that we just want to make sure that our classrooms run as smoothly and efficiently as possible. I thought it would be helpful (hopefully) to share with you two of my favorite procedures for making sure that my classroom runs smoothly.

I love using hand signals!  They are such a great way to make sure that instruction is not interrupted for things like requests for pencils, drinks of water, and so on.

This chart is from Keeping it Captivating.

I've always used hand signals in my class, but it wasn't until last year that I made the sign. Boy, am I glad I did that! Although the signals are not complicated, sometimes students confuse them and ask to use the restroom when they really just needed a new pencil.  The sign helps to eliminate confusion.

The hand signals are great because they are non verbal and do not disrupt the flow of a lesson.  When it comes to needing any of the things on the hand signal chart, I teach my students to ask for them during "non-teaching times."  That is, unless it is an emergency, save the bathroom request for when I am done teaching. And, we all know that drink of water can wait two minutes.  And, no one needs a new pencil while I'm in the middle of teaching a lesson on reflexive pronouns, so don't ask. Yep, I'm a meanie. ;)

I also love using my voice level chart to keep things running smoothly.  I have always set expectations for voice levels during work time, but I never made it visual until last year.  The display is located on the whiteboard at the front of the classroom. Once I announce the acceptable voice level, I clip a clothespin to that level on the chart.

You can find this voice level chart in my TpT store. Click {here}.

It's nice to be able to refer to the Voice Level Chart when a student forgets they should be working at a 1, but they are working at a 3.  They can see that they are off task and I can ask them to tell me which level they should be working at.  I have found that by having the visual, I am reminding the students less and less about their voice levels.

Be sure to head on over to these lovely ladies to see what kinds of tips they have in store for you today!


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2 comments:

  1. Super cute signs!! Do you think it's possible to have a classroom on 0 at all times? Ha! We can dream, right?

    Slainte,
    Molly
    Lucky to Be in First

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  2. I have the exact same hand signal sign in my room! I think I got the idea from you last year. It is a blessing in my classroom!!! Thank you, my sweet friend.
    -Jaime
    Bright Concepts 4 Teachers

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