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  • 5 Meaningful Activities for the First Week of School

    5 Activities for the First Week of School We know that the first week of school should be all about teaching procedures and building classroom community – but how can we do that in a meaningful way? With all the things that need to happen at the beginning of the year, it can be hard to come up with activities for the first week of school. Here are some ideas. Ideas for First Week of School Activities The first week of school should be focused on getting to know each other and learning about the classroom. Here are 5 ideas of meaningful first week of school activities. Decorate a Name…

  • My Favorite Activities for Community Building in the Classroom (+ FREEBIES)

    Community Building in the Classroom Having a strong classroom community is arguably the most important aspect of teaching. Our classroom community is what makes students feel welcome and comfortable when they’re at school. Community building in the classroom is something I am super passionate about, so today I’m sharing with you my favorite activities to build a strong classroom community! Classroom Community Building Why build a strong classroom community? Our students spend approximately 40 hours a week in our classroom – equivalent to the amount of time adults spend at their full time job. Think about it. Would you like to work in an environment where your coworkers don’t really…

  • How to Manage Classroom Noise Levels Effectively

    Classroom Noise Control Do your students struggle with their volume control when you’re working on fun activities? Same! This was probably the number one thing I struggled with when I was in the classroom. I have a loud voice, and my students would follow suit. Plus, I have a high tolerance for noise, so it never really bothered me! However, when classroom walls are thing, classroom noise can become an issue for neighboring classes. Because this has always been such a big struggle for me, over the years I have tried many different noise management strategies. The following list is a compilation of my favorite strategies. Just remember – every…

  • How to Encourage a Successful Classroom Clean Up

    I don’t know about you, but I can’t function in a messy classroom. And unfortunately, working with children isn’t exactly the best way to keep things clean. Because I am a huge stickler for keeping the classroom tidy, over the years I’ve perfected my classroom clean up routine for my students. If you need help encouraging your students to effectively clean up the classroom, here are some of my best tips. Keep in mind, my method does involve a little bit of micromanaging. Normally I am 100% against micromanagement in the classroom, but with cleaning up, I find it is somewhat necessary; at least until students fully understand your expectations.…

  • Meaningful Goal Setting for Students for the New Year

    Happy New Year! Do you have your New Year’s resolutions yet? Or have you already given up on them? It happens! However, I still believe that setting goals for the New Year can be a GREAT thing when done correctly. The new year provides new opportunities for growth and a fresh start. This goes for our students, as well. If you’ve never had your students think about their resolutions before, check out these tips for goal setting for students. Brainstorm Possible Goals The first step students (or anyone) should take in setting meaningful goals is to brainstorm areas of improvement. Before having your students write out their goals, allow them…

  • 6 Awesome Classroom Management Strategies That Really Work!

    Classroom management can be tough. It’s hard to find a solution that works when every class and every student is so different. Often, we think we’ve finally found a system that works, and then suddenly it doesn’t anymore! I found this often happened around Christmastime for my classes. Are you in the same boat? If so, I’m sharing 6 of my favorite classroom management strategies with you for some inspiration. Classroom Management Strategies 1. Mystery Reward Board This is one of my favorite strategies for classroom management. I always used these at the beginning of the year to help reinforce our routines and procedures. A reward board is basically a…

  • The Most Effective Classroom Management Plan I Ever Used

    It’s that time of the year when I always had to take a step back and evaluate my classroom management plan. Toward the end of the semester, things that worked earlier in the year seem to become less effective. This is probably because both teachers and students are tired and getting antsy! If you’re looking for way to switch things up, I thought I’d share with you the most effective classroom management plan I’ve ever used. Of course, every teacher and every class is different; but at the very least, I hope this can give you some fresh ideas and inspiration as you work on a new classroom management strategy…

  • How to Build a Strong Community with Classroom Jobs

    Do you use jobs in your classroom? They can be a really great way to build classroom community! Classroom jobs instill a sense of responsibility and belonging in students. They understand that everyone has an important role to play. However, classroom jobs can also be a pain point for many teachers. It’s just one more thing to have to keep up with! I know personally, as I was on that struggle bus for several years before I came up with a solution that worked for me and my students. I’m sharing with you how I used jobs in my classroom last year and why it worked, along with some classroom…

  • Teacher Organization Part 4: Teacher Storage Ideas

    Welcome to part 4 of my teacher organization series! Today we will be talking all about teacher storage ideas! We’ve talked a bit about storage options in other posts, but I want to really hit it hard today and specifically talk about systems that worked well for me. Remember, what works for me may not work for you, so take my ideas and make them your own! My goal is to inspire and give ideas, NOT to tell you that this is the only or best way to do it. Teachers have a lot of different materials in their classrooms. It is important to have a strong storage system in…

  • Teacher Organization Part 2: Organization on a Budget

    Welcome to part 2 of my teacher organization series! Today we will be talking all about organization on a budget. Believe it or not, you don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars on large storage items or fancy containers to be organized. You can easily create a functional, organized classroom on a teacher’s salary! As you are planning out your classroom, think about what items you need. Remember – you want to use what you already have first! You probably don’t need to buy as much as you think you do. Once you have things organized as best as you can without buying anything, make a list of the items…