Monday, September 7, 2015

Teaching Rules and Procedures

We all know that at the beginning of the year, one of the most important things we do is teach our classroom rules and procedures. One year, I had students tell me what they think should be our classroom rules. I wrote these on chart paper and posted in our classroom. They were super proud of the way they got to be involved in the details of our classroom community. 
Another year, I had these large set of  rule posters, which worked pretty well but they took up a lot of space. This year, I thought of doing something new. I wanted the rules to be visible, yet not take over my whole classroom. I also wanted to make sure I was intentionally demonstrating the expectations and going over everything my students needed to know. I created these small rule sticks and placed them into a cute little green bucket. These are actually my large rule cards that I printed 4 to a page, cut and laminated. EDITABLE RULES
During our circle time for the first two week of school, I  had different students pull a stick with the attached rule card. We certainly do not go through these in one day.  I attached the rule cards with glue sticks but velcro or tape will certainly work too. We talked about probably 3 or  4 per day for the first 2 weeks of school.  We acted out and modeled what they should look like. On specific procedures such as lining up, staying in our reading spot and centers, we worked on building stamina with my little timer. Worked pretty well. 
After we get done chatting and modeling, the kids were able to follow up by writing one or two of the rules in our  "Keep It Safe" rule book. I got a quick glance of their writing also. 

After we got through with all our rules and  procedures, we posted them. This is an example of what I did before I posted them all. They were small enough, yet visible. Not to mention, super cute !

This is how it looks after we have posted all of our classroom rules and procedures. It's funny to see the little ones go up to the board and point out a classroom rule when they are trying to correct or explain something to a friend. 

Incorporating rules and procedures in this fun way is easy to do and really makes them more meaningful. 

You can find these editable rules  HERE: