Good Morning! Einstein, my sweet cat, says “Happy Sunday!” Of course, everyday is the sabbath for Einstein. 😉
I have a trick to keeping the classroom tidy and clean. It works wonders! I use two strategies – procedures and group tally marks.
Clear procedures save hours of struggle in the classroom. It is one of my best tips for classroom management on multiple levels. I love the book “The First Six Weeks of School” from the Responsive Classroom folks. It gives great tips for setting up those procedures. Here is how I employ procedures to keep the class tidy:
My students are divided into five color groups. Each group has their own table with their own “supply tub.” (Tubs are from Mardel’s and I found little matching cups for each color group at IKEA!) Gotta love that place!) There are rules or procedures for keeping the supply tub. I start the year with just crayons, glue sticks and scissors. The procedures are:
- crayons go in their cup with the point up.
- scissors go in their cup with the point down.
- glue sticks go in their cup with the cap side up (so I can see that the caps are on!)
- name tents go on the side of the cups.
Once they have these mastered, I add pencils and markers.
- pencils go in their cup with the point up. The erasers and pencil sharpener are kept in the same cup.
- markers go in with the cap side up. (so I can see that the caps are on!)
- I give tally marks for groups who are following procedures on the carpet, during table work, and other special activities. (Table procedures – all chairs pushed in, table cleared off, and nothing under the table or chairs.)
- I mark those under their group on the white board.
- I check their supply boxes and tables after table work (several times a day) and give 5 points the best kept table and supply box. Some days the groups can have up to 35 – 40 points.