Welcome to another edition of WBT Wednesdays! Don't forget to catch the LIVE BLAB show tonight at 6pm CST! If you miss it, you can catch the replay!
As some of you know, I have been pretty sick with the most annoying, exhausting cough I have ever had in my life! I have had to miss work, which I hate to do, so I feel out of the loop with the classroom! But, since I am 6 months pregnant, my health has to come first, right? So anyway, I am excited to blog and blab with you all this week & maybe start to get back in the swing of things!
This week we are talking the WBT Classroom Rules & the 3 PEAT! These are 2 more easy & amazing strategies to get (and keep) your class on track without taking away teaching/learning time! Sounds great, right? If you have joined in for the last 2 WBT Wednesdays (Mirror Words & Class Yes) then you are well on your way to TEACHING HEAVEN!
Okay so first up... Classroom Rules!
Click the image to get these rules FREE!
Truth be told... I was skeptical of the rules when I first found WBT! If you have seen my Whole Brain Teaching story, you know I found WBT in the middle of a school year. I did not even use the rules at all that 1/2 a year. I always believed in having the students come up with the class rules so they could take responsibility for them! I would always say, "These are your rules, not mine!" ...they loved that LOL...
The next year when I decided to fully implement WBT (management and academics), I decided I needed to use these rules! So, I did what any teacher would do....manipulation!
Just kidding! Kind of.... so we had our meeting at the beginning of the school year and talked about classroom expectations. I let the kids come up with the rules & low and behold, most of what they came up with were the WBT rules, just in different words! So by manipulation, I just mean that I took what they said & rephrased it, asked them if they agreed, and then put up the rules! This is different than how Coach B instructs to use the rules (Rule #1 first hour, first day!) but, it is your classroom... do what works for you!
These are the WBT Classroom Rules. The one that causes the most controversy is Rule #5. I have heard of teachers taking the rule out, admins not approving of the rule, parents questioning the rule, etc. Here is what I say and do in these circumstances...
First of all, I make it CRYSTAL CLEAR to my students that the rule state KEEP your dear teacher happy, NOT MAKE!
I tell them I come in happy every day because I love to see them & I love to teach and learn! As long as I see them doing their best teaching & learning, I am happy! I also relate this back to Rule #4! We go over this OFTEN in the first weeks of school!
As far as admins and parents, I explain that this rule is somewhat of a blanket rule... one to cover anything else that the other rules did not cover. I also explain it the same way I do with the students. The kids do not in any way, shape, or form have to make me happy. They just have to do their best & make smart choices and they are following Rule #5!
So now that that is out of the way, how do we use these rules?
We practice, practice, practice these rules in the first month of school... I'm talking like 5-10 times a day, whenever you can, stop and practice the rules. I call out "Rule #1" and the students say (and gesture) "Follow directions quickly!"
I simply say the rule number and students repeat with what the rule is. This year in particular, this took EXTRA practice! They always wanted to repeat what I said instead of telling me the rule. Remember, this is most likely new to your students so if you don't take the time to practice, you won't get the results you want!
Once they know the rules, the fun starts! :)
Now, anytime throughout the entire school year when I see someone breaking a rule, instead of getting mad, calling them out, and giving them the negative attention they probably want, I simply call out "Rule #2!" (or whatever rule they are breaking) and the entire class states the rule, then I go on teaching!
If you are thinking this is crazy, just TRY IT! I swear even with my rascals, it works! I have one rascal this year who gets up out of her desk 24/7 for no reason! Anytime I see her even thinking about getting up when she shouldn't, I say "Rule #3!" and the class shouts & gestures, "Raise your hand for permission to leave your seat, ayiiii!" She immediately goes back to her desk and I go on teaching! It is a life saver, a time saver, and a sanity saver!
Another huge time saver in the classroom is teaching your students the 3 peat! The image above is from my Scoreboard Skills tags that I use to focus on certain skills when we play scoreboard!
The 3 peat works like this...
Tell the students whenever you have a direction for them, you will say the direction (and say please!), they will repeat your direction 3 times, then perform the task.
I need my students to take out a pencil. I say, "Pencils please!". They say, "Pencils, pencils, pencils!" and THEN they can take out their pencils (remembering Rule #1 for a smiley point!). Since I teach 1st grade, I practice this with saying the task 3 times while counting it on our fingers. One month into school and I still have some students who will perform the task before they repeat it 3 times. This gets them all a MIGHTY GROAN and we start over (practice makes perfect, right?)!
You can do the 3 peat with whatever directions you use in your class! Some examples are...
Lining Up ~ Lines please! Lines Lines Lines!
Standing up ~ Bodies up please! Bodies up, up, up!
Center rotations ~ Rotate please! Rotate Rotate Rotate!
You get the idea! Teach this to your students first, model it, and then practice your tails off! It will save you a ton of time transitioning throughout the school year!
Well, that's it for me on this fabulous WBT Wednesday! I hope you find some of this helpful and if you have any questions, please leave me a comment or check out the other WBT blogs from the linky below!
Prayers for better health for me are also greatly appreciated! 3 weeks sick and pregnant are just NO fun! "I ain't got time for dat!"
Happy *Whole Brain* Teaching!