Friday, August 14, 2015

Do This! Not That...Back to School Blog Hop


I am teaming up with my Lesson Delicatessen friends to bring you our DO THIS! NOT THAT Back to School Blog Hop!  As teachers we are always reflecting on what works, what bombed, and what needs some tweaking!  I am all about self-reflection.  Read on if you want to find out about a blunder I have made for awhile as a 6th grade teacher...grab a great FREEBIE, and find more valuable ideas and goodies from my buddies as you head through the hop!  The last stop lets you enter to win a $100 TPT Gift Card!

I had the opportunity to go to Las Vegas this summer and meet 1,100 other teachers that are passionate about their work in the classroom, blogging, and creating the best classroom resources.  It was an AMAZING adventure and I was so fortunate to share the experience with my children's kindergarten teacher, Jonelle Bell from A Place Called Kindergarten.  I adore this lady and am so grateful to have had this experience together!

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I attended blogger meet-ups and had the chance to learn a great deal in different conference sessions.  What I wasn't prepared for was introducing myself repeatedly and sharing "All About Me."  I was separated from Jonelle due to teaching different grade levels, and it was a bit overwhelming to branch out and talk to so many others I truly wanted to "Get to Know."  I wanted to meet everyone, but the environment was busy, loud, and a bit intimidating, at times.

What I realized is that so is EVERY SINGLE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!  For so many of my students it is busy, loud, and overstimulating.   Add to it a first day activity that I thought was fun for the students, but has potential to be truly uncomfortable for many.  You know the one, students have to get up out of their seat and ask everyone in the class a question, then get all of their peers to sign next to said questions on their paper?!  For a number of years I decided to implement this Class Signature Scavenger Hunt on the first day of school without realizing how it is loud, it is busy, and it is overwhelming to new and introverted students. DON'T DO THAT! I, too, plan to take a break from these intense hunts and I plan to...

DO THIS...(and grab this FREEBIE)


https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Getting-to-Know-YOU-Back-to-School-Chit-Chat-Cards-FREEBIE-2030831
The purpose of this Getting to Know You! Chit Chat Cards resource is to allow students to have the chance to share about themselves and listen to a peer while providing them with a focal point to begin their conversation in order to generate even more thoughtful discussion.  These question cards give students the chance to engage in conversation with a peer or small group without overwhelming them and sending them all over the classroom.   

Simply PRINT, LAMINATE, CUT, and EXPLAIN!  Have students share their thoughts with a partner or in a small group.  These cards will encourage positive peer interactions from that very first day of the school year, while making students feel more comfortable with one another.  That is our ultimate goal, right?! 

Enter my ELA Made Easy Upper Elementary Bundle Giveaway (a $90 value) below.
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/ELA-Made-Easy-An-Upper-Elementary-Resource-BUNDLE-for-Language-Arts-1925339
Then, head to my friend Amy's blog, Teaching Ideas 4 U, and snag another great tip and FREEBIE!  Best of luck as you and your students tackle the 2015-2016 school year!

http://amymezni.blogspot.com/2015/08/do-this-not-that-blog-hop-no-stress.html


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17 Comments:

At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Cinnamon Synonyms said...

Erin, I LOVE this tip! I especially love how you took your own experience in Vegas and related it to the classroom. It shows what a reflective teacher you are!

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Elyse Cookson said...

Thank you for sharing the Chit Chat Cards. I love the idea of small group rather than whole group. One activity that I always thought was fun was the toilet paper activity where the students take as many squares as they want, then discuss one thing about themselves for each square. I will no longer do this activity because it takes too much time. I like that the Chit Chat Cards will give everyone time to speak.

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Mrs. S said...

I am switching grades, so most of mine won't be used. I am adapting! :) I have to say that as an extrovert, I LOVED those games. It gave me an excuse to talk to someone I wanted to, without them looking at me like I was crazy to just walk up and talk. Met several young men that way ;). My daughter, however, dies inside at those games. Just another example of diverse learners!

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Teaching Autism said...

Your chit chat cards are great ! We do something similar, it's a big hit!

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger John Kocsis said...

Thanks for sharing your resources! I love this idea of getting to know you cards. I certainly will use them in my classroom.

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Jessica Walters said...

I too, used to do the class signature activity. Now you've got me rethinking that... Thanks for providing an alternative.

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Gina said...

I think I may try these. Thanks for sharing!

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Christy Beynon said...

I always enjoy your thoughts and insights!! And I really love the idea of Chit Chat cards - thank you!

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Karen H said...

I always used the getting to know you bingo activity. I won't use that anymore. Instead, I will try the Chit Chat activity.

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Donna Allsworth said...

The get up scavenger hunt.

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger kborden said...

I can't wait to try the Chit Chat cards on the first day!

 
At Friday, 14 August, 2015 , Blogger Amy M said...

One year I read Chrysathemum to my students, but I quickly realized that my students had heard the story three other times on the first day in years prior. I never used that story again! Lol! Thanks for the giveaway :)

 
At Saturday, 15 August, 2015 , Blogger kris6312 said...

I don't know what activity that I won't do again but I do try to stay away from the "what all I did this summer" activities. I come from a low income school so a lot of our kids don't have those type of opportunities. I try to find activities that help me learn more about the student instead.

 
At Saturday, 15 August, 2015 , Blogger Pam Andrews said...

Snowball fight.

 
At Saturday, 15 August, 2015 , Blogger Nicole Chatz said...

Thanks for the freebie! I'll never play the toilet paper game again (where you take as much as you need and then talk about yourself).

 
At Sunday, 16 August, 2015 , Blogger Aubrie Olsen said...

Thanks for the freebie and great give away!

 
At Sunday, 16 August, 2015 , Blogger Melanie Arizmendi said...

It would have to be the scavenger hunt.

 

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