Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Tips&Tricks-Teacher Survival Lesson 1

You can follow Tracy at her new blog: The Knit Wit Teacher

Now that we are into the school year and spring break is in sight it's time to talk about Tips & Trips to survive the rest of the year.

One of my pet peeves is having papers without names on them. So this year I started a highlighter system. I'm sure many of you use a similar system. Papers cannot be turned in without highlighting your name first. The magic of using the highlighter makes this boring task exciting. If students go to highlight their names and realize they didn't put their name on their paper then they must go back write their name and try again.

I was shocked by how quickly this system worked. If we are doing a multiple choice test, I also have students highlight their answers before they turn it in. This eliminates pages that were left blank of skipped problems.

Anyone else have a problem with students blurting out??? It's enough to drive a girl crazy. I'm implementing the "Blurt Alert". I came across this idea on ProTeacher and I couldn't wait to get it started. 

Anytime a student is caught blurting out in class the will receive a "Blurt Alert" stick. If they collect 3 of these they will stay in recess to write a Behavior Essay over talking during class. What are Behavior Essays you ask? They are the best behavior tool I've used in awhile. 

Behavior Essays are essays I have created and assign to students if I think their behavior warrants one. I have them for just about everything you can think of. They are great for those times you've forgotten a detention. Or those times your principal comes to you to say that Johnny is spending the rest of the day in the office for fighting at recess please send down work. You and I both know that any classwork I send will be finished in 5 minutes flat and little Johnny won't care a lick about getting it wrong. This is where an essay comes in. Now instead of rushing through work. Johnny will be writing an essay on not kicking during recess. 

After doing these for a year, I now have teachers coming to me asking for specific essays. If I don't have one made up yet, I make it real quick and send it back to them. They have really helped. Stay tuned for my entire file to show up on TPT. As soon as I have a few spare minutes I'm working on getting it posted. 

Earlier this year I used "Talking Tickets".

These were great for the first part of the year, but as with many tricks you've got to rotate them out. Next year I will call these Behavior Tickets and change them up a bit. My husband created these (I just made them cute) and while they worked for him I didn't like the categories that much. I'm working on revamping them to better fit my class. But it gives you an idea of something you could try. When I get mine finished I'll add them to my TPT store also. Again, it comes down to time. 

Speaking of Time....This weekend I'm making time to attend the Spring Blogger Meet Up in French Lick.  I can't wait to meet some new fabulous bloggers and hang out with some awesome ladies/gents. If you are attending come find Michelle and I and say hello! We may or may not be the girls with the bottle of Moscato. We will share. ;) 


P.S. Stay tuned for more Tips & Tricks to follow. 

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