Quieting Class Techniques?

Discussion in 'Behavior Management' started by rdpega, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. rdpega

    rdpega Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2007

    I am a new first grade teacher this fall, and want to have several simple techniques to quiet my class. Could anyone share ones they use?
     
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  3. carlea

    carlea Comrade

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    Aug 2, 2007

    I used lots of techniques w/kinders:
    Clap twice & raise my hand, put a finger over my lips - students copied.
    "If you can hear my voice, put your hands on your head (clap twice, look at me, etc.)"
    I rang a bell.
    "1,2,3, eyes on me."
    Just start whispering, they'll want to hear what you're saying & they'll quiet down (most of the time).
    Start clapping a pattern, they'll follow you.
     
  4. collteach

    collteach Comrade

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    Aug 2, 2007

    Clapping a pattern and having the kids clap back seems to work great for all ages. That is what our principal uses in assemblies. Anything that gets 500+ kiddos in grades K-5 attention is worth trying :)

    I do "Give me Five"....I just raise my hand (and if necessary say "Give me five"). The students know that this means they should:

    1. Be silent.
    2. Have their eyes on me.
    3. Sit still.
    4. Put all materials down quietly.
    5. Be ready to LISTEN
     
  5. gab

    gab Comrade

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    Aug 2, 2007

    Sometimes I turn off the lights, if it's handy.

    The kids are quick to quiet and: Stop, look, & listen. I leave the lights off while I give reminders, directions, or expectations. Students stay frozen until the lights are turned on again. This works great when our 4th grade buddies visit...there are about 50 kids in our room at that time.

    Sometimes I have other students turn off the light if I am sitting on the floor or at the group area...students learn to track me fast to learn what's going on/happening.
     
  6. TripleJ

    TripleJ Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2007

    When I start singing, that always gets them quiet...hahaha!
     
  7. rdpega

    rdpega Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2007

    Thank you, everyone!

    A kinder teacher friend of mine has several, but the only one I can think of is this: She says (expressively) to the class, "And a HUSH fell over the crowd." To that, the students are to say back to her "HUSH!" at a fairly loud volume, & then be silent, and voila, she has their attention! She says they LOVE to practice/rehearse that one! She said that when you have interactive attention signals like that, they are very effective, because there is practice time.
     
  8. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    Aug 2, 2007

    We use this one school-wide, only I don't think I've ever heard anyone actually say "give me five". When I'm in my classroom I do usually say, "Please give me your attention" while I raise my hand.

    I like that one because it is portable AND usually silent. There are some times when a silent quiet signal is useful. For instance, we took our students to the theater, and we could get attention quickly and without any additional noise.

    Of course, if you want something more "fun & interactive", I'm no help. I'm a secondary education major. :lol:
     
  9. soflgal

    soflgal Companion

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    Aug 2, 2007

    A few ways that work for me is :

    If you can hear me clap 3 times.

    I also say 1,2,3 eyes on me.

    And giving the peace sign, they know that means quiet and put up the peace sign too.
     
  10. ErikaG

    ErikaG Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2007

    I use give me five too. I also sign the letters L and Q as my quiet signal. L=listening ears & Q=quiet voices. The students that notice this silent signal get quiet and then sign it back to me. The other students take notice, get quiet and start signing the letters too! My kids love this "secret" signal. It really works.
     
  11. CarrieB

    CarrieB Companion

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    Aug 3, 2007

    I like the "give me five". Something else that is useful for the kids that keep talking even though their hand is rasied is to use the other hand to put a finger over their lips. Had a fellow teacher that made me do this during a workshop because I would keep talking with my hand up! Teachers make the worst students. I always feel guilty about getting onto the kids for talking while I am, when I do the same thing in teacher meetings.
     
  12. buck8teacher

    buck8teacher Devotee

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    Aug 12, 2007

    I found these on a website last night...some are great! Hope this helps!

    1. Hold up your hand and say, "Give Me Five." The children put their hands in the air and shout "five!" As they count down to one, they get progressively quieter until "one" is said in a whisper. Or, after saying, "Give me five," everyone puts their hand in the air and counts loudly using their fingers from 1 to 5.

    2. Teach the children that the five fingers on their right hand stand for the five things they must do when you hold up your hand. Say, "Give me five," and wait until all the children hold up their hand. Then lead them in saying the five things together.

    (1) Eyes -- look
    (2) Ears -- listen
    (3) Mouth -- closed
    (4) Hands -- still
    (5) Feet -- quiet

    Later when you say, "Give me five," the children are to think of these five things and hold up their hand to show they are ready to listen.

    3. Clap or tap in a pattern, for example, clap slowly twice and then clap fast three times. The students are to stop what they are doing and repeat the pattern. If necessary, do it again until all children have responded and are quiet. You may want to vary the pattern.

    4. Shake a shaker, touch a wind chime, ring a bell, play quiet music or use any kind of sound maker as a signal for students to be attentive.

    5. Raise you hand and stand still until the students are quiet. Or, raise your right hand and put the index finger of your left hand on your lips. The children are to do the same. Another idea is to hold up three fingers which is a silent signal for "Stop, look, listen." Then wait until all the children have their three fingers up and are quiet.

    6. Say, in a normal tone of voice, "Clap once if you can hear me." Those listening will quiet down and clap one time. Then say, "Clap twice if you can hear me." More children respond with two claps. Finally say, "Clap three times if you can hear me." By this time you should have the attention of your students.

    7. When you say, "Voices," teach the children to respond with a quiet, "Shhh..." Use it if the children are too loud. If you want their attention, say, "Voices" again and they respond with a quieter, "Shhh..." Say it a third time very quietly, "Voices." All students should be quiet and ready to listen.

    8. Tell your students that they will be playing, "The Still Waters Game" often, and that they will know the game has begun when you say, "1, 2, 3, 3, 2, 1 still waters has begun." Ask them to freeze like an ice cube and remain silent when they hear that sentence. Time the children to see how long they can remain still. The goal is to beat their best time. Hold your fist in the air and each time you see someone move or talk, put a finger up. Once you have all five fingers up, check your watch and tell the class how long they were able to remain still.

    9. Practice having the children stop, look at the teacher and listen when the lights are flicked off and on.

    10. Teach the difference between being silly and serious. Tell them that there is room for both of these behaviors. Then practice by saying, "Act silly!" Let them be silly. Then say, "Now, act serious." Model this often at the beginning of the year so when you say, "I need to have serious behavior," they respond accordingly and are attentive.

    11. Use a count down or count up system. Say, "You have until five to be ready for....... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5." Start a count down at whatever number you think the students need to be ready. For example, start with 5, 10 or 15 depending on the activity to be put away.

    12. Say, "Boys and Girls…" and then write numbers as a countdown on the board from 5-4-3-2-1. The idea is that there is a consequence if you reach one before receiving everyone's attention. For example, a child talking may have to move or lose some free time, or use some other outcome for the whole class. Another idea is to hold up your hand and count silently to five on your fingers as you look at a watch. Teach the students if they do not become quiet by the count of five, their recess time will be cut by the amount of time it takes them to become quiet.

    13. Use an old fashioned desk bell that you can tap. One tap means the class is getting too loud. Two taps mean that they need to stop what they are doing and listen.

    14. Use a target word for a day or week. Have the students pick one that is related to what they are studying. For example, pioneer, Ohio, or fossils. When you say the word, the children stop, look and wait for directions. Or, the children could respond with a definition or short response to the target word; for example, if you said, "Ohio," the students would respond, "The buckeye state." Other call backs could include "spaghetti" -- "meatballs," or "Abraham" -- "Lincoln." Let the students suggest new words to be used.

    15. Use a piece of poster board to make a noise level monitor. On the left side label it 1, 2, 3, and on the right side, list the type of noise acceptable for each. For example:

    1 - No talking
    2 - Whispering
    3 - Normal talking

    Use a large clip to indicate the acceptable noise level at any given time.

    16. Say "1, 2, 3, eyes on me" and the children say back, "1, 2, 3, eyes on you," with their faces turned toward you and looking at your eyes. Or, say "1, 2, 3, Look at me" in a sing song voice. Another teacher-child response idea is for the teacher to say, "Hey, oh," and the children reply "Oh, hey." Or, the teacher says, "Freeze, please." And after giving instructions, the children say, "Melt."

    17. Use, "Teacher Says," like "Simon Says." For example, "Teacher says, touch your nose," "Clap once," or "Teacher says, look at me."

    18. Say in a robotic voice, "Miss Moore to Class - Come in class" and smile! This method can be used with individual students as well. Or, use a special phrase when something is really important; for example, say, "Mrs. Brown's class..." instead of saying, "Boys and girls."

    19. Buy a large rain stick at a science store. When you turn it over, it sounds like rain falling. When the children hear the sound, they are to stop what they are doing and listen.

    20. For an assembly of the student body shout the school name and have the children respond with the name of the school mascot, i.e. the administrator shouts, "Memorial" and the children respond with, "Bulldog!" After they shout the mascot name they are to be silent.

    21. Let your voice get quieter and quieter as a signal for the children to be quiet. Talk softer or not at all until they are still. Or say softly, "Tootsie Roll, Lollipop, we`ve been talking, now let's stop."

    22.Teach young children the following chant:

    Teacher says; "1, 2." Children say: "Eyes on you."
    Teacher: "3, 4." Children: "Crisscross on the floor."
    Teacher: "5, 6." Children: "No more tricks."
    Teacher: "7, 8." Children: "Sit up straight."
    Teacher, "9, 10." Children, "Let's begin!"
    23. Sing the following words to the Frere Jacques tune: "Are you listening? Are you listening? Everyone! Everyone! If you are listening, if you are listening, look at me, look at me." Other ways to end the song are: "Snap your fingers" or "Pat your head."

    24. Sit in your chair and start singing one song after another with no pauses. The children all join in the singing and come to group time. You can do the same thing with poetry. Start reciting poems that the children know and they will repeat them with you as they join the group.

    25. Use motions like circling your hands quickly, then slow down and clap. You can also do the motions to a song like the "Itsy, Bitsy Spider.' When all of the children are copying the gestures silently, sing the song through.
     
  13. buck8teacher

    buck8teacher Devotee

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    Aug 12, 2007

    Also, when I student taught in first grade we did morning exercises and I did a little drum cadence type thing before we did a morning meeting...it went something like this"
    "Listen up first grade. Students repeat
    We're going to have some fun today. Student repeat.
    We're going to read, and write, and spell. Students repeat
    And we do all these things very well. Students repeat
    Sound off. Students repeat
    1,2...repeat
    Sound off. repeat
    3,4
    Sound off. repeat
    Bring it on home. repeat
    1,2,3,4...repeat."

    Then we moved to morning meeting. To make a long post short, whenever I needed to get their attention, I would say "Listen up first grade," and then they would repeat it and be quiet. It worked every time. They loved it and whenever I came to visit them in the mornings after my placement they always made me do the cadence call.
     
  14. MsWK

    MsWK Habitué

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    Aug 12, 2007

    I find that students who are engaged aren't disruptive, so I generally just start DOING something instead of waiting for the children to STOP doing something. Songs & fingerplays work, and when we're done, I've got everyone's attention. "Open, Shut Them" is one of my favorites, and I start with a big long, "OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO" that gets everyone's attention. This works great for transitions.
     
  15. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    Aug 12, 2007

    What works for me:

    Yelling at the top of my lungs, "BE QUIET"!!!!!!!!!! :D

    I'm just kidding; even though the thought has crossed my mind. :lol:

    I ring a little bell and they are to stop whatever they are doing and look at me.

    This has always worked for me, but I've gotten some more great tips here!

    Love this site,
    Sandra
     
  16. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Aug 12, 2007

    I do:
    "One fish, two fish!" (teacher)
    Red, fish, blue fish!" (students)

    My students quiet down right away!

    Also, during lessons if they get a bit ansy, I do:
    "Hocus, pocus!" (teacher)
    Everybody focus!" (students while making circles around their eyes w/their fingers)

    works every time!!!:2up:
     
  17. IloveKinder

    IloveKinder Rookie

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    Aug 16, 2007

    This is a cute one:

    Peanut Butter (teacher)
    Jelly (kids)

    :)
     
  18. redman98

    redman98 New Member

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    Aug 16, 2007

    I use a Yacker Tracker in my room. It's a sound meter that looks like a stoplight. The green light is always on, and if they start getting too loud, it changes to a flashing yellow. If they continue being too loud, it turns red and a siren goes off. I can set the decibel level (and manually control the lights if I want to).

    I just have a rule: if the red light comes on, they get extra homework (or some other pre-determined consequence). If they don't have them at a store nearby, just do a Google product search. They are a little pricey, but I'm sure somebody has them on sale every now and then.
     
  19. NJArt

    NJArt Comrade

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    Aug 17, 2007

    I do give me 5... works well. I have all the classes because i'm the art teacher, so all the kids know it. Great for quieting down an assembly full of kids quickly and easily.

    I "practice" it the first week with every class. Every year I tell them about give me five (mostly for any new students) and I have them "talk" to each other, and then practice quieting down. I make sure I use it a few times during the first class to reinforce it.

    I raise my hand and say in a regular speaking voice "give me five", and the students are taught to stop what they are doing, look at me and raise their hands. If someone isn't doing it i'll say "So and so forgot what to do, who can remind him." and one of the students will say what they are suppose to do.
     
  20. roamer

    roamer Companion

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    Aug 19, 2007

    I was an aide in a very talky 2nd grade class last year. I had to sub one day when the teacher was out. I explained to the kids that we were going to practice getting quiet quickly. I told them all to whisper to their friends and while they were whispering, I said, "aaaaaaand quiet." They were to all stop talking. We repeated that a few times..."Whisper...........aaaaaaand quiet."

    After that, all I had to do was say "aaaaaaaaaand quiet," making sure to draw out that and like I did when we were practicing and they would usually stop. If some were still talking, we'd practice again, whispering and stopping.

    It worked well for me, especially since I was only in charge of the class occasionally.
     
  21. TeacherGrl7

    TeacherGrl7 Devotee

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    Aug 20, 2007

    With my Pre-Kers it always helped to have them actively doing something. I started every morning meeting with them sitting on the carpet. When I was ready to start and wanted them to stop chattering to their neighbors I would say, "If you can hear me put 2 hands on your head...2 hands on your shoulders...2 fingers over lips...2 hands in your lap...are we ready?"

    By the time they had hands in their laps almost everyone was ready, and those that weren't catching on that we were quiet were usually prodded along by the others. They were so used to doing it every morning that I could use it at any point during the day in a matter of seconds. I also modified it from time to time just by changing what they had to do, so I knew they were listening and paying attention. This made it more fun for them, too, so they were more likely to open their little ears up.

    I loved this because if I was sitting in front of the class and was interrupted by the principal or someone and got wrapped up in a conversation, I could quickly and silently get my class' attention just by putting my hands on my head and going through all of the motions- all without interrupting the conversation.
     
  22. oasis

    oasis Rookie

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    Aug 20, 2007

    quieting a class

    I have used almost all of the techniques that have already been listed. My only advice is BE CONSISTENT with whatever technique you choose. I highly recommend using only one technique for the entire year! The trick is to find something that you're able to remember and stick with! Good luck!
     
  23. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Aug 21, 2007

    I count backwards from 5, showing the numeral with my fingers. I sometimes give a direction like "Everyone sitting in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 0". I say "5" loudly, and gradually decrease the volume of my voice, so that when I get to "0" I just show my fist (no more fingers) and everyone is silent. So far it has worked for me!
     
  24. oasis

    oasis Rookie

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    Aug 21, 2007

    the yacker tracker


    Just a word of caution about the use of a Yacker Tracker. I see that you are a High School teacher, so it may be different for older students, but I know from experience that this is more of a distraction for elementary school kids---they will actually TRY to make the red light and sirens go on (frequently)---it's like a challenge to them. I sold mine on eBay!
     

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