Tuesday, June 13, 2017


I don't know about you, but I'm over academics. It's summertime and I just want to PLAY!  I was looking back at some ideas teachers had shared with me several years ago and I thought, "Hey, that's a good idea. I'd forgotten about that!" So, join me for a trip down memory lane this coming week. I can (almost) promise you that you'll find one great idea every day to put in your toolbox for the upcoming school year.

Testing: Do Not Disturb
One teacher told me she made a sign that said “Testing! Do Not Disturb” and put it on her door when she didn’t want any visitors to see how much fun her class was having. Another teacher told me she wrote: “Disturbed! Do Not Test!” and put it on her door!
Take a Picture  (Brenda Lee)
Use this strategy to help children remember letters, numerals, or sight words.
Focus your camera. (Look at the first letter.)
Focus your camera. (Look at the word.)
Focus your camera. (Look at each letter.)
Snap the picture. (Each child’s camera button is on their head.)
Now it is filed away in your brain.
You can close your eyes and see the picture.

Listening Chant (Tune: “If You’re Happy and You Know it”)
If you’re listening to me do like this- (make a face for
children to imitate). 

If you’re listening to me do like this-(make another silly motion for children to copy). 
If you’re listening to me, if you’re listening to me, if you’re
listening to me- (line up, get ready for a story, get out your books, or whatever you want them to do).

Next time you go to a conference and buy a new book, CD, or game for your class, wrap it up like a present. Children can guess what is inside and then open it. It will make the new learning tool more meaningful, especially for children who never have had anyone bring them a gift.

                         Pat on the Back
At the end of each day choose one child and trace around her hand. Let her choose 4 friends to say something nice about her. Write the friends’ compliments on four fingers. Then the teacher writes his compliment on the thumb. Pin to the child’s back to wear home.
ARF – “All Request Friday”
A teacher was tired of the children choosing the same songs to sing each day, so she started ARF – “All Request Friday.” On Friday afternoon she gets out her little puppet and says, “This is WRBS - Rockbridge School from Lincoln, TN, and it’s “All Request Friday. Let’s see who’s on the line with their request.” (Puppet picks a child who suggests a song.)

Push the Wall

One teacher’s occupational therapist suggested that when children are waiting in the hall you tell them to put their hands on the wall and try to “push it down.” This builds upper body strength, releases energy, and focuses children’s attention.

Tummy Reading
Here’s another easy suggestion to help children build upper body strength. Let them do “tummy reading.” Children lay on their tummies and prop themselves up with their elbows as they read. Try it and see how it strengthens those arm and shoulder muscles.