Patience My Dear


At the beginning of the year I am so pumped.  I haven’t taught a lesson in weeks, my room is ready, my brain is ready for the creative juices to flow and then those cute darlings walk in and I have to hold back. 

‘Hold back…huh?’, you say.  Well after doing my summer reading and tearing through the curriculum, I just want to get teaching.  I feel the pressure to stay on track from the first day BUT I know from experience that I need to slow it down and JUST teach routines and procedures. 

You’ve probably heard it before that the need to deal with certain management issues just isn’t there during the year when you really hit your routines and procedures at the beginning of the year.  My past year is living proof.  I switched jobs in the winter and had to hop right into curriculum because the students were so behind.  We lightly touched on procedures that first week but it wasn’t enough.  It was something we constantly had to do for the rest of the year.  Maybe just 20 minutes here and there but that adds up.

Given that, I will be sticking to routines and procedures for at least a week but probably more.  Here is a list of somethings you may want to remember.

-lining up (to leave the room, when out and around school, expectations of what the students’ bodies should look like, noise level)

-leaving the room, entering the room

-classroom duties and jobs (individually, table)

-morning routine (backpacks, agendas, folders, bookshopping for home, unstacking chairs, morning work, pencils)

-when is it appropriate to sharpen a pencil

-materials (where do they belong, when should I use  them, who is in charge of getting them, how do I clean them up)

-Noise level (see Noise Meter on past post)

-What do I do when: I want to go to the bathroom, need water, need/want to speak to the teacher (non-lesson time), I want to speak during a lesson

-What should my body look like: in my chair, on the carpet, during small groups

-What is a brain break?  Why do we do them?

-classroom rules, expectations, warnings/consequences, positive management (bucket fillers)

-classroom library, book bins, choosing books, caring for books, reading alone, reading with others

-afternoon routines (packing up, getting to transportation safely, cleaning my area, cleaning our room)

-manners (when are the appropriate? expected?  what do they sound like?)

-classtour (things I need to know about this room)

-organizing student space (book bins, cubbies, desks, binders and folders)

-use of the computers

-recess rules

-turning notes in

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