One of my favorite blogs since moving to 4th grade last year is Head Over Heels For Teaching. She has some wonderful ideas and I love reading her blog posts. Since it is Saturday, I have decided to join her Spark Student Motivation Saturday Linky.
Since I just finished my first week of school, I wanted to share two activities that I did with my students this last week. The first activity was a Back to School Scoot Activity from Head Over Heels For Teaching.
I had never done a scoot activity in my classroom before and she had this as a freebie so I thought I would give it a try. It went fairly well but some of my students got confused about how to travel around the room. Go figures!! It had nothing to do with the activity itself. It was who was paying attention when I was giving out the directions. I guess if I would to do another scoot activity, I will probably have to physically show them how to move from one area of the classroom to the other. I probably shouldn't blame this too much on the students because I have 25 kiddos and a very small room to work with so the desks are arrange oddly so that they would all fit.
ANYWAY . . .
the information that I received from this activity was priceless. I loved some of my students answers and was a little surprised at some others. It was a good piece of documentation to let me see which kids knew themselves well and which students had no idea about what they thought. It gave me good insight into which students thought about their answers and who just didn't care. I already have my red flag up for a couple of my students that I need to make connections with right away so that I can make this a fabulous year for them. My students really enjoyed this activity and I did too. It will be a keeper for next year.
Another activity that I started this first week of school was a motivational incentive program to do the right thing when we are out of our classroom. It is from A Cupcake for the Teacher and it is called Secret Star. My students love it.
I take two discs from the jar every time we leave the classroom. I watch all the students as they walk through the building to where ever we are going but I especially watch my two secret stars. If they do actually what they are suppose to do, they receive a starburst when we get back to the classroom. If they don't follow the expectations, I don't give them one. This has REALLY worked. My students love it. (I have had to get other candy for two students that can't have chewy candy so I brought in smarties for them.) My students do not let me forget to pick two discs. Here is what mine looks like.
I did finally find some plastic jars at Walmart in the kitchen area but I don't have a picture of them.
Please go visit these two teacher's wonderful blogs and enjoy reading about their activities. I am so glad that I did. Next week, I will be trying something new or blogging about something that I do in my classroom. Until then,