One of the first things teachers learn in their pre-service teaching classes is the importance of establishing effective classroom routines and procedures for the middle school and high school classroom. Here is a look at 12 effective daily classroom routines to consider for your middle school ELA or high school English classroom. Essential Classroom Routines According to Shana Ramin from Hello, Teacher Lady , daily agenda slides are one of her classroom's most valuable tools. She started creating daily slides a few years ago to keep track of lesson materials and make it easier for absent students to see what they missed. At first, she only posted them on Google Classroom — students could log on and access the information and materials they missed in one convenient place — but Shana quickly realized how beneficial it was to display the slides for students at the beginning of class as well. Students would walk into class knowing exactly what they needed for t...
At the beginning of every single school year, I agonize over whether or not to accept late work. Finding the balance between being firm and strict, but yet also caring, nurturing, and empowering is difficult to find. If you lean too far one way, you will lose students in the middle of the year. For the first few years of my teaching career, I changed my late work policy with each new school year. One year I would accept late work at any point in the year, and the next year I would not allow any late work whatsoever. During the years when I would accept late work, I always seemed swamped and overwhelmed. During the years when I didn’t accept late work, I had less assignments to grade and saved a lot of time. I also thought that I was teaching my students about responsibility and accountability. Allowing students to turn in late work is time consuming. You must be super organized, have a system in place, and put in extra time grading all of those late assignments that come rolling ...
If you’ve never conducted a fishbowl discussion in your classroom, you and your students are missing out. Similar to a Socratic Seminar, fishbowl discussions are organized classroom discussions that require students to prepare thoughtful responses to deliver in class. I love using fishbowl discussions as an end of the unit review activity because I can give my students a lot of content to review and use to prepare for the discussion, and I can also use the discussion itself as a way to assess my students’ speaking and listening skills. Organize your classroom You will want to prepare your classroom for the discussion. Typically, I place two tables or four desks in the center of the room. That is my fishbowl. During the discussion, four students will sit in the middle of the room and answer and discuss the topic questions. The rest of the tables and desks in the room are arranged in a circular pattern around the fishbowl. That way, just like people look at the fi...
Classroom management is something that many teachers struggle with, especially as budget cuts pack more and more students into classrooms. Some secondary classrooms across the nation have as many as 40 or more students in their classes. This not only makes teaching the content difficult, but it also makes classroom management and individual student contact more difficult as well. One particular area of concern is maximizing instructional time. In an ideal world, class starts the very second the bell rings with a classroom filled with attentive students who are ready to learn. In a real-world setting, this is oftentimes not the case. Depending on school tardy policies, many teachers may struggle with stragglers coming into their classrooms at the very last minute. And then there are the students who need to sharpen their pencils after the bell rings, the ones who come in after the bell rings, and the ones who need to catch up with their friends during those first few minutes of cl...