To my readers:
Thanks to your support, I am happy to announce that Edutopia has invited me to write a guest blog for their website. (Full disclosure: they’re sponsored by the George Lucas Education Foundation. Yes, that George Lucas.) Here’s an excerpt from my back-to-school posted entitled “Cheat Sheet for the First Days of School”:
As the bulletin boards go up and the chalkboards, whiteboards and Smartboards get dusted and polished for another intense school year, some of the newer teachers (at one point, this was me, too) scramble to remind themselves of the tone they need to set in the classroom, and how their own routines will often mirror students’ routines. Any good teacher knows that we all have shortcuts, a handy set of things we need to remember before we develop the other, more elaborate parts of our routine.
1) Develop an easy slogan for expectations in your classroom.
Having a slogan that everyone can remember will remind kids of the rules you clearly set in the beginning of the school year. Few of us (teachers included) look up at the rules and cite them in our punishment. Most teachers have a general guideline of behaviors that we expect and pull up quickly when a student has crossed a certain line. For instance, my slogan is usually founded on respect: i.e., “Respect yourself, respect me and respect each other.” Most of the rules we live by in the classroom follow in more detail. I rarely have to look up at the rules, because the kids remember the word “respect” and, for that matter, “disrespectful.”
As usual, I count on all of you to share, comment, and like the article in whatever capacity you can. Thanks a lot.
Jose, who has had a good Monday …