Wow!It's Wednesday already and time to do a little reflecting as we get ready to make improvements and start planning for our new year with new kiddos!
Why didn't I think of that sooner? We've all said it!
Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest ones! Over the years I have had a literacy center-based classroom, a hands-on science classroom, a Debbie Diller workstation classroom and a Daily 5 classroom. In order to successfully manage kids up and moving about and all trying to get to their favorite of the choices without squabbling, it takes some creative planning.
What Didn't Work?Too much to do! When the responsibility falls on the teacher to assign, track and manage rotations of any kind, it takes away from time better spent on something else like finding or making engaging materials for my word work and writing rotations. Sometimes the organization required was mind-boggling especially with nine daily workstation rotations. I have happily passed that job off to my students!
Meet Turn-Taking Teddy!
This is how Teddy helps. Before beginning Daily 5 rotations, my students have to have all the things they need on top of their desk, so there is no rattling of pencil boxes, or digging in desks to get supplies out when the groups are called back.
I call out "READY TEDDY?" and hand him off to one student all organized, still and quiet. (I try to choose a different student every day). With Teddy in hand, that student looks for someone near them who is also 'ready' and passes him off. We talk about being fair, so they don't always pass him on to a friend.
After handing off Teddy, the student gets to go to the rotation of their choice. My students know that on most days, we will get through all of them. If we don't, we work on dealing with disappointments in an appropriate way.
Once Teddy is up and moving, I am free to go to the reading table and get ready for the students that I will be working with.
The Rule of FIVE during Daily 5
Because Teddy takes his time (usually about 3 minutes) making his way through the room, this eliminates the rush of children trying to be first to get to a rotation. The class knows the rule of five. When there are five at a rotation, the station is full so they need to make another choice. It works. They do it without complaint. This is how the real world works too. If I can't get close to see a display, I wait or go somewhere else for a while. If a line at the store is too long, we do the same, right?
Try it and you may never go back to any other way! Thanks Teddy for helping us learn to take turns!
Will you Join us?
This kind of reflection and sharing of ideas can help another teacher to find the solution they have been searching for. It can also help to make our demanding work a little easier too!I'd love to know what works and what didn't for you. Link up with me on Wednesdays! Just save the image and use it in your post! Leave a comment below if you like letting us know where to find you and we will visit you too! :)
In case you missed them in my last post, here is a link to some freebie Daily 5 items:
Have a wonderful Wednesday!