Your Best Tip

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by paperheart, Jun 24, 2007.

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  1. NCP

    NCP Comrade

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    Jun 26, 2007

    Routine, Routine, Routine. Even if you feel bored, the kids will respond soooo much better when you keep it predictable.
     
  2. srh

    srh Devotee

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    Make up a class roster in a table format and photocopy several onto colored card stock. I use these to track everything from "first day packets" (where we break down each page into a column listing each item in the packet and check off as they arrive--they're mandatory for the office); to turned-in field trip permission slips, money, etc.; to completed art activities at centers (so I can prep for the absent ones, etc.). This is the most indispensable tool I use in the classroom, and I use one until the columns are all filled up. Shows me just how much stuff we track throughout a school year!
     
  3. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Wear confortable shoes. Everyone is happier when the teacher wears comfortable shoes.

    Another one:
    If your commute to work is like mine (I pass 4 schools in an 8 minutes drive to work.) leave early enough to avoid having to drive extra slow in the school zones. (Ours go into effect at 7:15-middle and 7:30-elem so I leave my house at about 7:10. leaving later can sometimes make my commute 20 minutes long when it should be less than half that.)
     
  4. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Have a basket of quick ideas. I use them while in line, while waiting for someone to show up, etc. They are mental math games, phonemic awareness games, etc.

    I have the kids do their own attendance each day, by signing in on a board.

    Make sure each child has a water bottle.

    There are many more, and I was thinking of them earlier and can't remember now!
     
  5. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Re: water bottles A friend told me to supply the bottles of water, because kids have been known to sneak Vodka in using water bottles. Thoughts?
     
  6. mstnteacherlady

    mstnteacherlady Cohort

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Have each child highlight their name each time they turn in their paper. This helps them to remember to put their name on the paper and also helps you find the name on the paper (for those students who can't remember how to head their paper - even in April or May). It helps them be responsible and helps you keep your sanity. You don't have to ask who forgot to put their name on a paper. If a student still forgets, I post it on a board that has a heading "Who Are You?" My students always look at the board if they didn't get their paper back!
     
  7. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jun 27, 2007

    That's crazy, although not unheard of. One of the teachers in my department had a student drinking a vodka-Powerade-cough syrup concoction out of a Powerade bottle. It was bad.

    I think it would get very expensive if you supplied water bottles for your students. I think it would be a better idea to just be vigilant... you'll know if your kids are getting a little tipsy or start stinking of tequila.
     
  8. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Assign student numbers, I am using Wig's system for adding new students in this year. Collect papers in this order noting the missig numbers on a sticky note.
     
  9. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Just out of curiosity (and showing my ignorance), who is Wig?
     
  10. mstnteacherlady

    mstnteacherlady Cohort

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    Wig's system? I'm not familiar with that. Could you explain?
     
  11. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Was Wig's the system where you assign numbers based on multiples of 5s or 10s, so that if a new student enters you don't have to redo your numbering or have anyone out of alphabetical order?

    Example numbers:
    5
    10
    12 - new student
    15
    20
     
  12. MrsPatten

    MrsPatten Comrade

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Begin the first day teaching your kids to be friends and remind them frequently that we are all friends. This makes them more willing to share and ask questions.

    Also review the rules and consequences every day for the first week (longer for the little ones.) I also remind my kids that anything I tell them to do is either 1) so they can learn or 2) so they can be safe.
     
  13. knittingbec

    knittingbec Comrade

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    Jun 27, 2007

    I know one teacher who gets one of those water-cooler type services. She asks for a donation ($2 or $3 per family I think) and uses that money to help fund it.
     
  14. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Our kids are not allowed to bring beverages into the school. There's a cold water fountain in the cafeteria, and there's a huge range of drinks to buy.
     
  15. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    That's how our school does ID numbers... in multiples of 10, for the same reason.
     
  16. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jun 27, 2007

    Another thread just reminded me of this:

    be aware that you probably won't get your first paycheck until you're 1 pay period into the academic year. In my school, that means mid September.

    I don't want anyone short of cash because they just didn't realize it!
     
  17. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    A good friend of mine started teaching (4-5th grade SPED) in a rural area 4 years ago. The school year (for teachers) began around August 10. She didn't get her first paycheck until the end of October, because:
    1) her school district only pays once per month, and
    2) She had to have an entire pay period "in" before they would cut her a check. They did include the bit from August in the "September" check. She had no idea they were going to do this, and it was really rough for her and her family!
     
  18. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Jun 27, 2007

    If you use a paper gradebook, write the names on the first page and then cut out that section on the rest of the book. I may be the only one who didn't know this, but I spent years just re-writing the kids names in each section until I saw another teacher do this.

    Thanks TXTeacher - I use dry erase boards a lot and we went through a lot of tissues as erasers!
     
  19. Brendan

    Brendan Fanatic

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    Her numbers are set up by by alpahabetical order order of course, but she puts the students grade level before it (I put the block they have me) and then their number. To put in a new student you just put a lowercase letter after the number.
     
  20. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    That's great info! We didn't get our first paycheck until about three weeks after school started, which I found out just in time to pay my September bills! I was fortunate to have a little bit saved up, but I would have been up a proverbial creek if I hadn't planned for emergencies.
     
  21. srh

    srh Devotee

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    Yeah, that was a stunner for me two years ago. We started school in mid-August and I didnt get paid until September 30. Ugh! And THAT was after NO SALARY for eight months while I lived on a meager amount each month I had taken out in student loans. (Had to quit my former job in order to student teach full-time.) Boy, did I learn to live on NOTHING!!!!
     
  22. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    This conversation reminds me again how much I love my hubby! I am in the enviable position of (1) having the choice of student teaching or interning, and (2) my salary isn't needed for the bills. We plan to invest most of it instead (and I get to go shopping, too!).
     
  23. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    Cut up sponges are good for dry erase boards too!!! I used them and all you have to do is rinse them out & use them again. Good idea!
     
  24. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    Would you care to adopt me? LOL:D
     
  25. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    LOL! Sorry, nah, we've waited a loooonnnngggg time to have the house to ourselves. :D
     
  26. MissFrizzle

    MissFrizzle Virtuoso

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    Aw shucks:p
     
  27. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Jun 28, 2007

    our school doesn't allow students to have water bottles at all, so may need to check your school's rules beforehand.
     
  28. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    OR, they could bring in a sock.
     
  29. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    OOOOooh, I like this even more than my stinky sock idea.
     
  30. Jame

    Jame Comrade

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    Jun 28, 2007

    Old, clean socks do work well, though. :) They store very compactly in cramped for space desks or baskets. My kids like slipping them on their non-writing hand, and then erasing is just a quick swipe of the hand. They are strongly encouraged to take them home for a wash or a replacement from time to time. :D
     
  31. srh

    srh Devotee

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    I've used sponges for the past two years with GREAT results! I bought a bag of 24 (I think) at Dollar Tree, and that's all I've needed! I cut them in half and keep 20 at a time in a ziploc bag that students can go to or that can easily be passed down a row if they're on the carpet. I stick with one color at a time, though, or they would take forever choosing one!!

    Be sure to get the soft "lightweight" (think "bouncy") ones, not the dense sponges. Sorry. I don't know how else to describe them!!
     
  32. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    You dismiss the class, the classs doesn't dismiss you.

    Set the tone that students cannot leave your room unless it is clean and you've finished your last sentence. It doesn't matter if the bell rings (within reason, of course).
     
  33. TulipsGirl

    TulipsGirl Cohort

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    I live on Expo colored board markers - I mean EVERYcolor they make. I used to go out and buy them and then I finally thought of asking the school to order them for me.... anyway, I spend a lot of time drawing visual things on the board and the more colors, the better!! I found that my students could be hanging from the rafters, but as soon as I start demostrating something with all those colors, they're staring at the board , and interacting. I do LOTS of color coding with them (think consonants, vowels, addition, subtraction, you name it!) Youd be shocked by how color spices things up :)
     
  34. knitter63

    knitter63 Groupie

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    The best advice given to me was to remember this: the parent really does want what is best for his/her child, and he/she loves the child. If you approach the parent remembering this, it is easier to talk to them since you see them in a different light. Also, a parent's worst nightmare is having you think they can't parent. Are we all perfect??
     
  35. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Well said, LauraB. That is advice I need to remember myself sometimes.
     
  36. goopp

    goopp Devotee

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    I like socks because kids can put their dry erase marker inside to store it and it doesn't get lost in their desks.
     
  37. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    I have thought about buying a pack of toddler socks and giving each child one in the cup I am going to attach to their desk.
     
  38. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    OOOOoooooo... I like the cup idea. I was planning on attaching a ziplock baggie to their desk... hmmmmm... but I do like the cup idea too.....
     
  39. Youngteacher226

    Youngteacher226 Enthusiast

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    At the beginning of the year, teach the kids hand signals for things they may need to avoid interruptions during small group/reading workshop. For example, I teach my kids 1 finger if they have a question, 2 fingers if they need to go to the bathroom, 3 fingers if they need to take care of something on their own (sharpen pencil etc.) I think I got this idea from Harry Wong. It worked out very well last year, but another idea I just found is to assign classroom jobs that designates a student as the "Materials Manager". The "Material Manager" gets materials that other kids may need like post-its, writing paper, anything that is accesible without interrupting you to get it. The manager gets it!! Great idea! Also, I already have a "Teacher Assistant" job in my classroom, but I think I will include a duty of answering questions about work that other kids may need help on or to give further directions if needed. So when the kids put up 1 finger, the "Teacher Assistant" will answer them.
    I'll post more...I am in the process of documenting all these great ideas on a computer word document so I don't lose them!!:)
     
  40. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    I got the idea from someone on here. I bought 4 packs of cups from Target when they were 75% off for .25 a set. My mom helped me drill a hole into them, and I plan to either zip-tie or o-ring them to desks.

    A teacher on my team uses ziplocks for kids to keep their unfinished work in, and while great in August they look icky in May (even by Nov lol)
     
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