I'm really a little sad that we are halfway through the book already. I've loved every word of it and find myself really reflecting on lessons I taught this year and how I can make things even more exciting in my classroom this year.
This chapter is about enthusiasm and how you "bring it" to your classroom every day. I know we have a passion for giving our students the best experience possible when they come to us. But there are days when you're sick, or your car died at the gas station, or you spilled your entire cup of coffee on the way in to school and you just aren't at 100%. But you FAKE IT and try to be enthusiastic and plaster on a big ol smile. My car broke down this year on the way to school. I was planning on being there super early so I could set up a fun math lesson I had planned. I pulled into the gas station to buy a bottled water and then my car wouldn't start. I wound up being late to school. Late to school and cranky. I told my class what had happened and I said, "Ok, give me ten minutes and then I'll be ready and we can get this party started!" Truthfully, I wanted to skip the lesson altogether, but I felt much better pretending my morning had gone just the way I planned.
Dave Burgess talks about his routine before class starts. I have one too! But I think mine benefits me and my students. My class is extremely structured and I have found that my first graders respond to that. We like routine! Every morning my students come in and unpack, I greet them, and they begin morning work. While they work I have music on. As the year goes on I make a playlist of songs that the class likes and that's often what they listen to. I love hearing them sing softly to songs and they get their work done. After our attendance bell rings I sharpen pencils and then our day begins. The good thing about this routine is that even a sub can do it so my students still start their day off on the right foot!
Carmen from Exploring Elementary is this host of this chapter! Head on over and check out what she has to say!