Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Next Year: Past Years

Yesterday I wrote about thinking ahead to changes in procedures and routines you'd like to make for next year, and I gave a couple of examples of bigger issues I tackled in this arena. Because some of you asked, here are three of my favorite "next year I will" promises I made to myself that made a big difference when I implemented the changes.

  1. I removed all pencil sharpeners from the room and just left out a box of sharpened pencils by the door. We've all dealt with the pencil fight. Students should bring their own pencils. They do not. We want them to learn responsibility. I get that. But one year there were three staff meetings in a row that I had to lend a writing utensil to a co-worker. You know what? Even in the "real world," a great many people don't take responsibility for their own pencils, and I am not going to fix that problem with my own personal classroom war. Also, I hate pencil sharpeners. 99% of them are total garbage. And they're an excuse for students to walk around, talk to their friends, create a distraction, etc. Just accept that part of your salary will always go to pencils and move on with life.
  2. I refused to accept any individual assignments. Students love to throw assignments on your desk, in the wrong tray, in your hands, in their friends' hands hoping they will somehow get into your hands... enough. I had students keep all of their work in their folders, and only graded what was in their folders. That way it was completely on them to keep track of their papers, and completely the end of "you must have lost it," which was never true anyway. (More about my folder system here - I. LOVE. IT.)
  3. Students received two hall passes per quarter, no questions asked, but no more than that. It really ticked me off when a kid would decide that my class was their bathroom class. Or when one kid asking to go somewhere set off a chain. So, at the beginning of each quarter I stapled two passes into their folder (again, love the folder system). They could use them for whatever and almost whenever they wanted, but once they were gone, they were gone, and if they had an "emergency" they would owe me a detention. At the end of the term unused passes could be redeemed for some teeny tiny reward. Excluding medical conditions, no one should need more than four passes a semester, and in fact after implementing this most kids didn't even use one. Problem solved!
What "Next year I will" promises have been big successes for you? I'm sure others would love some suggestions!        


10 comments:

  1. I agree with the pencil thing! I have them available and move on with life...why make this an issue? My only requirement is that they have one BEFORE I start the class. If you stop me, because you didn't get it for your bell ringer, then it becomes an issue!

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    1. The next year tense indicates that an action will have been finished at some point in the future. When you’re a teacher, organisation is a big deal. It can take hours a week to plan well-crafted lessons that engage students and change them forward to the next level in their learning. I am also one of the dissertation writers UK and I would like to planning for next year.There are so many parts that go into creating a week’s worth of lesson plans and it can be a daunting task.

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    2. As the New Year is around us now, and all are working on their way towards their goals and the fulfilment of old resolutions and new resolutions. It is a very important post for those people or students who are you in the habit of making New Year’s resolutions. In the circumstances of psychology assignment writing - http://www.secureassignmenthelp.com/psychology-assignment-help/ and many other colleges’ tasks students missed their resolutions sometimes. But by taking online writing help they get time to fulfill their old resolutions and making new resolutions. Thanks for sharing motivational post.

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    3. You have given amazing ideas! Everyone has a resolutions and goals for the upcoming year as well as procedures and routines. There are so many students who would be interested in what exactly the forms look like that you give to the students here! I am professional dissertation help UK service provider and have seen lot of ways of submitting assignment in the university but the idea of how to keep student’s document properly using binder which is very unique as seems well occupied. My students will sure love it and also suggest to their professors in university about these ideas.

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    4. Nice post. Everyone has a resolution and goals for the upcoming next year. When routines and procedures are carefully skilled, displayed, and recognized in the classroom, children know what’s expected of them and how to do certain things on their own. Our best professional CV writers team at CV Folks also has resolution and decided to give best CV writing services to our students, employee and company. Having these predictable patterns in place allows teachers to spend more time in meaningful instruction.

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    5. Most activities below require only paper and pencils. If students put their information in video form, then a video camera and some set beautification will be required. Since I am Quality assignment help - http://www.qualityassignment.co.uk/ writer. Have students write letters to students who will monitor in their footsteps. The letters might include favorite memories of the class or score, advice about how to be successful in the score, things to do and not to do, and so on. Highlight to students that letters should be optimistic, designed to help calm the nerves students often feel during the first days of a new school year.

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  2. In your consequences section of your paperwork (filing system), you mention something called the Cookie Jar of Rightousness. Oh my!! I would LOVE to know what this is. Can you share what this is? It sounds awesome! Lol

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    1. Ah, the Cookie Jar of Righteousness! I write all about it here, it's one of my favorite classroom management tools (and the kids LOVE the name!)! http://www.facsclassroomideas.com/2012/04/cookie-jar-of-righteousness.html
      Thanks for reading!

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  3. I hate the pencil issue. I bought a box of pre-sharpened golf pencils (no erasers) and if they need a pencil that's what they get. I think 12 dozen was less than 8 dollars. Needless to say, most have learned to bring their own pencils. I still have part of a box left--not bad considering I have about 400 students per year.

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  4. Very knowledgeable and informative article,Thanx for sharing it, i will do share with my friends.

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