Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Always Searching for Ways to Motivate Through Environment

I spent hours after school today hanging bulletin boards in my classroom.  I haven't been so excited to set up my room in years.  Here are a few things that I am hoping to institute in my classroom environment this year:
  • Twitter Board:  I found dry-erase sentence strips at a teacher store and taped them to my door.  As students enter, or leave, my classroom each day, I will ask them to "tweet" about a variety of things:  their learning from the morning, their lunchroom conversations, their learning in the class period, questions, etc.  I think it'll be really fun.  
  • Classroom Library:  I reorganized my classroom library and book area to create a place for students to go talk about reading and writing.  Here, students can find a book of interest and sit to read independently.
  • Partner Area: I created a "partner spot" for learning where students are free to go and talk about writing or reading.  They must sign-in and explain where evidence of their learning is taking place.
  • Student Area:  I used to do this as a classroom teacher each year, but I never kept it going with small groups.  This year, I created clear routines and a specific area to access materials and complete simple management tasks:  pencil sharpening, extra papers, unsharpened/sharpened pencils and writing utensils, storing materials and notebooks, etc.  
  • Facebook Profile Bulletin Board:  I am going to take pictures of my students and ask them to create a profile for the bulletin board. I'm excited to hear how they define themselves.  As I created my own profile for this blog, I thought long and hard about how I explain my life in few words.  I hope they do, too.  

I hope to post some pictures soon of students using these areas with excitement and enthusiasm!  I hope.  :)

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