Classroom procedures - how long to practice?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by maestracuartogr, Aug 8, 2009.

  1. maestracuartogr

    maestracuartogr New Member

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    Aug 8, 2009

    Greetings! This is my first post and I am so happy to be *here*!

    I am a first-year teacher and have enjoyed reading Harry Wong's book, The First Days of School. I want to implement his suggestion of practicing classroom procedures and routines for the first two weeks of school, but my question is: is it truly necessary to do it for two weeks? Within those two weeks, do you start to teach academic content? If so, at what point?

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!
     
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  3. Lynnnn725

    Lynnnn725 Connoisseur

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    Aug 8, 2009

    I actually do it longer than two weeks. You will feel rushed to get started with curriculum content but try to make sure you have established a great learning environment first! I do not think 2 weeks will be enough. You might start slowly adding stuff in to your routine, but do not hesitate to stop what you are doing to practice the correct way to come to the carpet, the correct way to walk or whatever it is!
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2009
  4. maestracuartogr

    maestracuartogr New Member

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    Aug 8, 2009

    Thank you very much for writing back!

    Do you really practice the routines day in and day out for those two weeks? I guess I am having a hard time imagining what that would be like! (I know - things have changed a lot since I was in school!) I guess I might feel like a drill sargeant if all we did was practice, practice, practice. Am I still totally confused? :)

    Do you do activities related to the procedures, like, games to quiz their knowledge on the procedures? When do you introduce the first curriculum content?

    Thanks again!
     
  5. Lynnnn725

    Lynnnn725 Connoisseur

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    Aug 8, 2009

    Okay - I teach first grade..I thought I was in the 1st grade forum...but I'm not!! So, I have no idea how long it takes 4th graders to catch on so....anyway...

    I teach procedures as they are needed. For example, on the first day of school they will learn about my line expectations. I will have a few people model what our line will look like and sound like. Then we will practice getting in our line. We will do that several times. Then we will talk about the hallways and walking in the hallways. Then I will give them the tour of the school. During the tour, if they are meeting line/hallway expectations, we will stop right there and correct them. When we go to the lunch room we will discuss our lunch room behaviors and what it will sound and look like. Before we go to recess we will physically go outside and review recess equipment safety, boundaries, etc. We will do this everyday for the first few weeks! The amount of time on each of these will decrease as the days goes by. There will be some content taught in the first days but my main focus is to make sure they are following the procedures and routines I've set forth.
    Again, I teach 1st grade, but I will introduce curriculum content on the first day when we go over our names. I'm not sure what the 4th grade curriculum is like. You will do some light curriculum stuff I'm sure. Have you met with your team yet? My team has met and we've planned our first week together so I have a schedule of what I'm doing those first days.
     
  6. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Aug 8, 2009

    I practice procedures throughout the first month- practice doesn't necessarily make perfect... perfect practice makes perfect. I prompt a lot... I ask a lot... it is Say, See, Do teaching with procedures, as Fred Jones puts it.

    For the procedures specifically, I do role-play, explain to a partner, and games for the whole group. I have also considered having students make movies of procedures before, though I have never done it.

    I teach the curriculum from day one, but not so much the first day. We are required to teach reading upfront, basically, so we read our first anthology selection the very first day (The Case of the Missing Lunch in Macmillan Treasures). Math is required from the third day. However, I don't start reading centers until the 4th or 5th week of school because I have a PLETHORA of procedures to practice in reading. I want them to learn why they use post-its, how to work in groups, (if you are a team leader for a group of students) how to lead a group, and begin grasping strategies before they do a lot of work together. I get in a chapter book before centers begin to model all kinds of strategies, too, and get them interacting at least in their partnerships at the mini-lesson area. By October 1st (generally, give or take a week), I am normally ready for reading centers.
     
  7. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Aug 9, 2009

    When I student taught 3rd, we taught procedures for the first two weeks, but gradually taught more and more of the curriculum as the two weeks went by. Any time that we had a lapse, we would re-visit and reteach the procedures.
     
  8. Mrs.Schwartz

    Mrs.Schwartz Rookie

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    You must buy The Cornerstone by Angela Powell. You must. The book is about $30 but is 500 pages of amazing stuff. She talks you through all the procedures and what procedures she recommends you teach day 1, day 2, etc. She teaches 3rd grade so things are geared more for that age, but can easily work for K students too. I am so glad I have read her book as many times as I have, I recommend it to every new-ish teacher I see too! Please go check it out, you'll be glad you did.
     
  9. natelukesmom

    natelukesmom Companion

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    Aug 9, 2009

    For me, it always depends on the class. Some classes need more practice w/ procedures & some don't need that much. However, I always practice when it's "practical" for example, if we are going to line up for something - then I practice the line up procedures; if we are taking a class bathroom break, then I practice bathroom procedures, etc. We arn't "only" doing procedures though - we are also slowing fitting in content here & there. Procedure practice is an ongoing thing in my room. I hope this helps!
    BTW, I went to a conference & saw Harry Wong speak...he was really good & the book is awesome.
     
  10. Zanity

    Zanity Rookie

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    Aug 9, 2009

    I make my students a manual on how the classroom runs. We start day one with going over this. How the behavior management plan works. How to sharpen a pencil, go to the bathroom, and put coats away. As we do reading time we have to learn that also. But with my manual I go over it in detail day 1 and 2 then pull from it as we go. My last 5th grade I had to practically drill sargent them when we stood in a line. Hey there were 5th graders oldest in the school they didn't need no line! I fixed that real fast lol.
     
  11. Bumble

    Bumble Groupie

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    Aug 9, 2009

    I'm taking new teacher induction and the facilitators said to incorporate procedures and expectations into the content. For an example, if the objective is "Students will be able to select the key events from a passage," then you could type up a paragraph about completing a certain procedure. Also, before you do anything go over the procedure. I'm going to model the procedures and eventually fade into using students to model how to complete the task so that it doesn't get too boring.
     

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