Last week I shared some thoughts and perspectives from my son’s first year as a middle school student. This week my friend Noelle is sharing her “MUST TEACH ROUTINES” to make the most of every instructional minute with middle school students. Here are her thoughts…
Year five is in the books! Each year I try new things, and learn how to best set students up for success. This year I have found that there are middle school routines that I did not explain in my first post, and there are a handful more that I realized that I relied on for this year. I present to you 15 MORE must teach middle school routines and procedures. Let’s get started, shall we?
1. Where do backpacks go?
Yep! I tripped over several this year due to a new desk layout. I prefer for students to have them under their desks so that the aisles are clear, but I could also see students hooking them to the backs of their chairs. Some of you might have lockers or other corrals for backpacks, which is awesome.
2. What to do when you are finished?
My school uses the phrase ‘assign yourself.’ I simply have to tell students to “assign themselves,” and they know exactly what it means. Here are some questions to think about before implementing this in your classroom: Do they get out a book or can they work on homework in another class? Can they get on technology? Are they actually finished? Have they done everything that is required of the assignment? Is there an extension or challenge activity? If so, where is it and do they need permission to go get it?
3. If you are missing a supply
I discussed pencils in my last post, but this year, many students were missing their orange folder. Their orange folder is where I passed out an entire unit’s materials, so in order for them to be successful in class, they had to have it. They would leave it at home or worse LOSE IT. I had four back up packets for each unit that were stored in an accessible place. Students had to have their orange folder out as part of their bell ringer routine, so I could visible see if anyone was missing it. Students could borrow the packet to use for a class period, and they would put it back before leaving class.
Think about what essential supplies your students need…what should they do if they don’t have it?
Read the full list at my friend Noelle’s blog, Maneuvering the Middle.
Check back next week to learn about engagement and assessment strategies that you can’t live without.
All the best,