July 16, 2016

Classroom Organization - Back to School Teacher Tips #2

Back to School Tip #2
Classroom Organization

Classroom organization is one of the most important things to consider as we head back to school.  Teachers with effective classroom management will have an organized classroom set-up, with routines and procedures in place that keep the environment conducive to learning. During the first  weeks of school it is important to teach students those routines and procedures that will help your class run smoothly.  A lot of time will be spent in explaining, modeling and practicing your expectations.

Classroom organization starts with the physical arrangement of the classroom.  How will you arrange the student desks? Where will you do small group instruction?  Do you have a large area or carpet to bring your students together?  Where are your stations, centers and classroom library?  You want to arrange your physical space so your procedures and routines are easy to carry out. 

Classroom procedures and routines need to also be in place.  Procedures and routines are how things are done in the classroom.  Students must know from the very first day of class what they are expected to do and how to do it. I use a checklist to help me remember which routines and procedures are important for me to directly teach when we start back to school.  Here is a sample of the items I have on my checklist.

One important procedure I make sure to have in place is the use of Hand Signals to do things like use the restroom, sharpen pencils, drink water and get a tissue.  These are quick easy signals students give me that I can respond with a nod yes or no and it doesn't interrupt the lesson.  The general rule when in a lesson is that unless it is an emergency they need to wait until the next transition for these types of requests.  However if that emergency does happen, this allows them to quietly let me know without disturbing the flow of the lesson.  It is also helpful during other times in class like stations, seatwork, small group instruction, etc.  The hand signals I use are listed below.  Each number 1-5 represents something students show me to let me know their request. The fist up is my signal to them that I need complete silence.  These signals work great with the students.

All of these classroom procedure items can be found in my Classroom Procedures and Routines Packet.  This contains the checklist for beginning the year, the Hand Signal Posters, a Student Booklet for students to use as they learn your procedures and routines and Task Card for a Scoot Game to practice what they learned.

Click here to download the product.

Classroom Procedures Booklet has pages for students
to write notes on the routines and procedures you teach.

Task cards to practice the routines and procedures.
Use them in a center/station or as a SCOOT Game with the
answer sheet that is included. 

For other Back to School Teacher Tips click the link below:

Until Next Time...

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