I had someone once try to make me feel bad about having fun while teaching in my kindergarten classroom. They even said I should use the word “engaging” instead of fun.
Never mistake smiles and laughter in the classroom as not learning. It is the way to build rapport and capture interest. It is a tool to open the door to learning! Don’t ever let anyone make you feel guilty about having fun in your classroom! Open that DOOR!
Not every lesson is going to be a Disney experience. We want students to value learning even if it’s not always fun. Plus, teachers would be exhausted planning lessons. That is a great reason to used Teachers Pay Teachers to find “FUN” lessons. Rigorous learning entails deep thought and reflecting on those thoughts. You should also run a very tight ship when giving instructions or it will lead to repeat instructions and misunderstandings.
We are competing with technology now in a new way. Today’s technology is a game changer in education! One great way to ensure engagement is to integrate technology into your lessons. I try to make every educational resource have some kind of fun hook or exciting end of the unit review to capture a moment that students will be inspired to learn. Most of them include technology.
I want children to wake up excited to come to school. FUN lessons are a perfect tool to increase student engagement, to retain information, and to build a rapport with your students. We should strive for creating fun memorable moments with students regularly. Research shows that engaging students in the learning process, including technology, movement, comedy and collaboration increases learning.
🍏👉 Share your ways you build rapport with your students.
It’s time to show teachers a #LOTTALOVE with a giveaway! We are giving away TWO $100 Teachers Pay Teachers Gift Cards, and ONE $100 Amazon gift card to THREE lucky teachers. I’ve have joined with a few other fantastic teacher authors to bring this giveaway to you. You just have to be a teacher and enter the raffle for a chance to win!
Are you ready for the 2018 Winter Olympics in your classroom? It is such an exciting time to be in the classroom and to connect with your students with what they are most likely watching at home. It is full of history, inspirational stories, and competition. What’s not to love? I’m so excited about the Winter Games this year! Living in Florida, we don’t get to see a lot of snow here, but we love to watch it on television. I made some Winter Sports Resources designed with your classroom in mind to help them make connections, learn the history of Olympic symbols and traditions, and to create classroom discussions. (Click the photo to LEARN MORE)
So, I’m sipping my coffee watching GMA, when a story comes on called “Celebrities ‘Stand with Keaton’ to Support Bullied Boy with words of Encouragement.” It is about a young boy’s emotional viral video with him telling his mom about being bullied at school. His mother had to pick him up early due to him being bullied. His emotional outpouring on camera just made me feel so heartbroken, but not helpless. He said kids pour milk on him and put ham down his clothes. They call him names and make fun of his nose. This is so disappointing. I know as teachers, we are in the forefront of preventing children from bullying. We can make a difference and protect these children while teaching others about kindness. Keaton is amazing! The end of the video, where he tells people to “stay strong” and thinks it will get better is absolutely inspiring! I stand with Keaton, and I hope you will too. Yesterday, I posted about bully principals. Today we are talking about strategies you can use to prevent bully behavior in school.
Practice What You Preach Some of the same bully principals I wrote about yesterday, preach about how teachers should have a zero tolerance for bullying. Stopping bullying begins at the top! Principals should have a zero tolerance and lead by example. Some teachers are guilty of this also. I know of children who were bullied by a teacher. The teacher humiliated them in front of their peers, held their work up and called it “ugly” to the rest of the class. They even made fun of a student who stuttered while encouraging others to join in on the bullying. The students, along with a group of other children who felt bad for the students being bullied by the teacher, did the right thing by telling a teacher who told an administrator. That administrator did nothing to protect the children. The School Board was informed. They did NOTHING to prevent this situation from happening again. So, don’t just define your beliefs. Live them!
Increase Adult Supervision Most of the time bullying happens when kids are alone and without supervision. If bullying is happening at lunch, as a teacher, make a point to walk around a couple times or actually eat lunch with some of the students. If you are aware of issues in the hallways, ask teachers to volunteer to monitor the hallways. Most teachers, when aware of a bully issue, are happy to assist. If it is on a bus, talk to the bus driver.
Have School Wide Bully Prevention Workshops A lot of schools just put up an Anti-Bullying poster and never really talk about it with the students. Teachers, you should role-play bullying scenes with students. Give them strategies like when they SEE something, SAY something. Make sure as a teacher, you follow through with telling the proper people about any bully situations you discover. We want every child to feel safe at school. Even if you have a poor administration or district, you can talk to your staff and have them supervise areas.
Teach KINDNESS Teach acts of kindness as part of your social studies curriculum. Reward students for kindness with hugs, stickers, a shout out on the announcements, etc.
Work with parents who have children who are being bullied. Some teachers don’t want to get involved because sometimes it is a fine line between bullying and innocent teasing. The bottom line is if a child is feeling like they are not safe in school, there is a problem. Talk to the parents to come up with how students can know the difference. Tell the student you are there to keep them safe. Work with the students who are bullying or “teasing” to know the difference. Some kids don’t even know they are bullying until you bring it to their attention. This is why it is important to role-play.
Talk About It Have regular conversations with a purpose. The goal can be each week to take 5 min. to discuss with your class about if they feel safe at school or on the bus. These discussions can lead to your ability to gain knowledge about bully situations before they get out of hand.
Share Keaton’s story with your students. Show support by sharing his story with the hashtag #StandWithKeaton!
I hope some of these tips will help you help your students. Our number one priority is to provide a safe learning environment for our children. Watch the video here.