SCHOOL'S FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL

     

The first day of school is absolutely one of the most important days of the year. It"s the day you mix the tone for your classroom for the entire year.

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Every teacher wants to lớn have a smoothly running classroom, but that"s difficult to achieve when you don"t know where lớn start. As a new teacher, you might be feeling as though you"re groping around half blindfolded, with only bits and pieces of information, rather than the whole picture. What you need is a vision of what you want your classroom khổng lồ look lượt thích as a positive learning environment. Then you need khổng lồ take that vision and use the first day of school to lay the groundwork for making it a reality.

Before school starts, take some time to sit down & brainstorm all your expectations. That includes how you want students lớn behave toward you and one another; how you want the day-to-day activities and transitions khổng lồ be performed; and how you want your classroom to feel. Within each of those categories, think about different scenarios from your own days as a student, and plan how you will giảm giá with each one. Some questions you might ask yourself include: how will students enter the classroom, leave the classroom, turn in homework, work in team situations, work as individuals? Picture what you want lớn see happen and then write it down as a statement.

When you"ve mapped out that information, create a poster of basic classroom expectations for everyone lớn follow. Your poster won"t include every single expectation, just the ones that guide student behavior. You"ll also want to create some posters that illustrate procedures for various activities during the day, such as entering và leaving the classroom. Write those procedures in a very basic step-by-step manner, with no more than five steps each. Post those posters where all students can easily read them. When you have a clear idea of how you expect students lớn behave, and of what you expect them to vì from the moment they enter the classroom until the moment they leave the classroom, then you are prepared to lớn explain those expectations to your students.

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Now, we lay the groundwork. When planning your first day of school, be sure khổng lồ alternate between fun ice-breakers and getting-to-know-you activities that build a positive classroom community, & discussions of your expectations & procedures. You need a mixture of both throughout the first several days; students can absorb only so much information at once. By alternating fun activities with practical & serious ones, you give students time to internalize the information. When transitioning from a fun activity to a lesson on expectations or procedures, be sure to reviews previous information before moving on lớn new information. For example, you might ask students khổng lồ show you the quiet signal & explain what it means before discussing more classroom procedures.

Classroom Management Series

Be sure lớn see all the articles in Emma McDonald’s classroom management series: * Laying the Groundwork * Forming Good Habits * Setting the Tone * Freedoms & Responsibilities * Consistency and Flexibility * Motivational Tools

When discussing classroom expectations và procedures, be sure khổng lồ speak slowly, establish one-on-one eye contact with each student, và pause significantly after each expectation. That reinforces the impression that the information is important, và it gives students time lớn listen, understand, và internalize what you are saying. When you rush through and speak quickly, students tend khổng lồ dismiss the information as unimportant.

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You"ll also want to practice with students such procedures as the quiet signal, và entering & leaving the classroom. Continue khổng lồ practice them throughout the next two weeks. By practicing procedures và expectations with students on the first day & through the first few weeks of school, you lay the groundwork for your vision and build habits that will last all year long.