Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by beachteach, Jun 19, 2007.
Jun 20, 2007
What a beautiful poem. You sure had a lot of success this year!
I do morning meeting daily. We do greetings to begin the day, then I check in with the kids to see if they have anything interesting that has happened or that they need to share. Sometimes someone brings in a memento from home.
I also play math games. I play one game each day, usually it is a quick game, about 10 minutes, from the TERC curriculum or one I made up. We do rounding, estimation, skip counting, mental addition, making change, etc.
I also alternate with some phonemic awareness activities with the whole group, sometimes syllables, root words, endings, rimes, and other things like that.
I have a morning message activity each day, and we go over that as well. This takes about 5 minutes, unless it really tripped them up. I don't do calendar activities with my 3/4 class. We do go over the weekly schedule or daily schedule and talk about upcoming events. We discuss problems, concerns, ideas for projects, etc. Next year I want to incorporate the newspaper into this, and look at the local and national weather, front page headlines (when apppriate) and some other features of the paper.
Sometimes I do a read aloud at this time, which will lead into an actvitity to begin our literacy time. I don't always do this, but it doesn't make sense to do meeting and have everyone there, if I am going to do a read aloud later anyway. It depends on the purpose of the reading. Usually I read a chapter book, but if I am doing non-fiction or a picture book, I do it at the end of the meeting.
I also have a closing circle at the end of the day, and we compliment and appreciate one another at that time. We go over homework and work out any issues from the day.
Total, I spend about an hour a day on meetings!! We do so much then, I count it as my math and LA curriculum also. It brings the group together. We learn different conflict resolution skills, use talking sticks and other meeting formats, and really get to know one another. I LOVE MORNING MEETING! I use the Morning meeting book from Responsive Classroom to guide my meetings, and have added in the math and language stuff.
I just went there and ordered 3 books. Thanks!!
I've been looking too. I am interested in Morning Meetings, The First Six Weeks of School, and Spaces that Work. What books did you buy?
Anyone else: What books do you have?
Well, after reading this website, I went and bought The Morning Meeting Book from Amazon. I toyed with the idea of getting 99 Activities and Greetings for Morning Meeting also, but I thought I would try out the other book first.
I'm actually really excited about trying this out, especially since this is the first I've ever heard of it.
I can't wait to get them.
Jun 21, 2007
Our school has ALL their books. You can sign up for the newsletter. It is really great, and offers wonderful management ideas.
Oh wow these books look awesome!
I remember a professor telling us we had to read Teaching Children to Care but there were so many books I ordered after graduating I didn't have the chance to get that one. Hmmmm.
99 Activities and Morning Meeting Messages look sooooo good too!
Okay you can see sample pages from the morning message book here. Yep I need to buy it.
those of you who already do morning message...
Do you write yours on chart paper or your whiteboard?
I usually use chart paper, but this year I'm ordering a 2-sided easel, and thinking of writing it on one side.
Miss Kirby: those samples really got me thinking. I never made my message "interactive". Often I posed a question, but I've never had the students write on the message board. That is a good lesson in turn taking, and proper use of the markers/board. It will come in handy at center time!
Now it makes me want to buy those other books too!! I'm really holding off because I'm notorious for starting some great planned activity and after a few months, I get board and stop. I really do think though MM will be one that I keep up with. There just seems to be so many positives. I really liked the website that gave you samples of what the charts look like. Sometimes it's hard for me to strike a balance since I teach grades three, four, and five (only 7 students, but still tough), so it was nice to see a chart for the third grade and the fifth grade.
I started writing them on chart paper, but then realized that I'd run out of chart paper fast. Then I started writing them on my easel. Then halfway through the year I stopped. I'm going to try to start them up again at the beginning of the year. It's so important!
I was interested in Morning Meetings as well, so I read "The Morning Meeting Book" by Roxanne Kriete. I think it's great. MM has 4 parts- Greeting, sharing, group activity, and news and announcements. Many people think that MM is just a meeting in the morning, where you take care of daily housekeeping. That is NOT the case. It is actually quite involved. To implement it correctly (and effectively), I recommend reading the book.
I just bought Morning Meeting and the Morning Messages book from Amazon. If you sign up for their credit card you get $30 off. What a great deal!!!
I just ordered The Morning Meeting book. I can't wait to get it and read it.
My kids LOVED this part of the day. We actually called it afternoon meeting. It lasted for about a half and hour after lunch. We did things like what kind of mood are you in today...pass around a bucket filled with color beanies...
It gave them a chance to express their feelings and explain why. The kids loved it.
I always asked a yes/no question to the kids...then on the white board they would sign under the yes or no collum.
I did a small paragraph about the day and had them edit simple mistakes in it. They loved writing on the board.
I love this idea! I'm going to steal it and use it to end the day! Maybe sometimes I will change the question and the meanings of the colors, like "your favorite part of today" or "what you learned the most about today" or something.
I especially like your idea because you can even get a sense of what the kids who don't like to talk are feeling!
Glad I can help! It really is wonderful for the timid kiddos.
I also created a sign of what each colors mean and hung it up.
Walgreens has a stuffed animal on sale this week called Mushabelly Grumble Pillow. It grumbles when you squeeze it. I'm going to get one and use it in MM.
I write my morning message on the white board. The kids love picking out which color pen they will use to respond. Sometimes I have them write their response on an index card.
Jun 22, 2007
Amazon shipped my books! So I should get them probably on Tuesday. I start summer school on Monday (2nd grade math) and I think I might try it out on those kids. I'm thinking the Morning Message, Greeting, Sharing, then a math game.
I do not understand why the public library doesn't have any of these books The NYPL is HUGE, shouldn't it have everything?! At this point in my career (1st year teacher) I can't afford to buy every great book that I'll hardly have time to read....
Jun 23, 2007
Sorry to throw another book out there, Bored-:sorry: -but....I just started reading this book called Elaine's Circle. It is the story of a 4th grade teacher from Alaska in the early 1990's who has a student diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor. The review and link to Amazon is below, but what struck me in what I have read so far, is how she used the morning meeting to create a sense of community in her students. This book is such an affirmation of all that has been said in this thread regarding MM's!! It goes into great detail about how and why she set up her MM's and her amazing outcomes. I am very impressed and even more eager to incorporate MM's this fall. Just had to share!
From Publishers Weekly
While working on a "book of uplifting (and true) stories about teachers," Katz (The New Public School Parent) found Elaine Moore, the fourth-grade teacher of Seamus Farrell, a student who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in December . Based on interviews with Seamus's now college-age classmates, his family and neighbors, and Moore's co-workers in Eagle River, Alaska (just outside of Anchorage), Katz recreates the [1992–1993] school year in this account of an innovative and compassionate teacher's answer to the question "if Seamus was no longer strong enough to come to Ravenwood [School], why not have the class come to him?" In keeping with her belief that "children can handle the truth, even hard truths; what they can't handle is not knowing," Moore informs and guides her students as they find a way to keep Seamus a member of their class. In small groups, they form mutually beneficial peer tutor meetings at Seamus's home during lunch hour. Sadly, Seamus died the following September—although he outlived the six-week prognosis by almost a year. Katz's book is about handling illness and death, and about teaching; Seamus's spunk, his teacher's perseverance and his parents' dedication are quite moving.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
CLZ, that is a wonderful way to close the day.
Jun 25, 2007
Have you or anyone else ever had a problem with kids sharing too much?
I've never had a problem with my kids sharing too much. Do you mean like too much personal information? I've had kids talk about how mom/dad yelled at them that morning and it hurt their feelings. They've shared about how their big brother or sister picks on them at home or doesn't share their toys. etc. Most of the time, my kids came to me and shared some deep things with me one on one. Like one child told me how they didn't have electricity at home and they had to run an extention cord to the neighbor's house to get light. You know, things like that have been shared but it was always while I had one on one time with my kids. My kids were very comfortable with just coming up to me after taking their bookbags off and just telling me about something that was really bothering them. I would hug them, tell them everthing will be okay and try to comfort them so they could have a productive and happy day.
We had lots of issues come up in Peace Club, but none that we couldn't handle. One girls father even died in the spring and we all were part of her grieving and went to the funeral as a group.
The thing I did have difficulty with was a few girls who just loved to prolong and incite the negative social interaction. They seemed to thrive on it. At a certain point, I had to remind them that they were expected to deal with some of this on their own and prevent the rest of it.
You know how some kids just like to share a little too much. I was wondering if some kids got very personal in front of the class.
I was also thinking of my class last year that loved to talk! I would see a morning meeting talking the whole day with them.
How do you put limits on the kids sharing?
Excellent question! [waiting patiently for some wise responses!]
It got to the point this year where during math/reading/etc. I had to say, "If your hand is up to tell me a story, please put your hand down and save it for later", and nearly every hand would go down! I hate to make my students think I don't want to hear their stories, but we only have so many minutes in the day! And one story always leads to another...
One thing I do if alot of kids want to share, I have them "turn & talk". Turn & talk is when you are doing a minilesson, or a read aloud or even share time, you can give the class a prompt for discussion and they turn to the person next to them and talk (share). I do this all the time with my read alouds, like I may stop in the middle of an interesting part and say, "okay, make a prediction about what you think is going to happen to this character. Now, turn & talk". So in other words, if you are having share time and alot of your kids want to share, tell them to share with the person next to them instead of to the whole class. This way, they are still sharing, but in a more intimate way. And teach the kids that they don't always have to "share" with you (the teacher). Sharing is about building community, sharing our thoughts etc. and we can do that with anyone we trust. One good thing you can do is while the kids are "turning & talking", you can move around to diff. partners and listen in on discussions and be apart of them in that way.
I've had children tell WAY too much -- like the little boy who announced he was very happy today, because his father just got out of jail. The other kids began teasing him because his father had been in jail. They never would have known if he hadn't announced it.
I have to say for those of you who have never tried MM, the most important thing I think I did at the beginning of the year is talked to my kids about respecting their classmates and teaching them to be be understanding and empathetic. I even taught them responses they could say to each other during share time (if they had nothing else supportive to say). My kids knew that if they got rude or treated each other badly during Peace Circle, than they would have to deal with me. Building a community in the classroom is so important and I taught them how to treat each other like family. Just like in your real family: never let an outsider treat your family badly, take up for your family, treat your family with respect & kindness etc. And they really remembered that. Even to the point where another child was being bullied in the lunchroom and a couple of my girls defended her and came & told me right away. They protected her. So somehow you have to teach your kids to allow room for honesty during share time and be prepared to have something supportive to say, just like in your real family.
Jun 28, 2007
I just got The Morning MeetingBook and 99 Activities and Greetings in the mail from Responsive Classroom. I am so excited!
I also got this cool chime that I'm going to ring before meeting time.
I have to stop spending money ......
Responsive classroom sets up morning meetings with four parts. Morning message, greeting, sharing, activity/song (I'm pretty sure those are the four). I remember them being very clear that calendar time was not morning meeting time. I did my MM and then in the afternoon we did calendar as a way to start math. It takes as long as you let it, so why not start small? A message and a greeting. I bet you do it anyway. It's just one more way to instill routine into the classroom. I love it!
Right, calendar is definitely not morning meeting. But because of time issues, I do greeting, sharing, calendar/songs/and soon to be shared reading as the group activity, and morming message/news and announcements.
Although calendar time is not a part of MM, I will still do calendar EVERYDAY!!! I just think that the components given in the MM book are cool, and i will buy the book and take a look at it, but I know how important calendar time is for my 2nd graders because we practice all the math skills that I feel are neccessary. It's up to each individual teacher what they feel is important I think. Like, my collegue who teaches 2nd grade as well has been trained to practice the Responsive Classroom, and she does alot of the songs/activities etc. But I do not. My Peace Circle is a major part of our day, but I also feel like any time I can throw in reading, writing or math, I do. I don't know, I guess it's just me. I don't neccessarily think that the calendar itself is important, but everything else is. But I will buy the book later this summer, I want to slow down on spending money for a few weeks.
Is there a website that talks more about Morning Meeting? I've pretty much passed my limit on spending (on books for myself) this summer! I still want to learn more about this and didn't know if anyone knew of a good website. I did a search, but it only brought up sites about the books.
Jul 7, 2007
I'm considering getting these book as well, but I'm wondering - instead of having students write their response to the morning message on a board, would it work to have them journal their responses? I'm looking at the message as an activity to do first thing while I'm taking attendance, etc, and then move into morning meeting. If they're getting up to respond it might make it difficult to take attendance.
I am planning on having them complete the message as soon as they come in the door. That way we can discuss the message as a class during the morning meeting.
I would end with some kind of shared writing that will springboard you into your seatwork or writing workshop. Something like interactive writing with a theme or just a question of the day and have kids come up and write one word responses to get them thinking. I do a modified calendar cuz I get so bored of it otherwise. I mostly do a quick welcome and modified calendar math, then shared read and maybe a song or poem. Then we write a shared response on my whiteboard easle. Sometimes it is just ryming words, sometimes science ideas, sometimes it is DOL sentences they help me fix, then we go to seats different ways, ie. "If you are wearing green, hop to your desk like a frog, if you are already 7 tiptoe to your desk, If you also love dragonflies, fly without a sound to your desk." Kids love fun transitions. Then we do some form of writer's workshop with the shared reading as a springboard to mini lesson.