Why it’s important
Conducting classroom meetings first thing should be an integral part of every morning routine. It’s an excellent way to ease students into the day, These meetings also create a positive, productive classroom culture. Students will become familiar with the routine and it will provide an excellent start to each and every day.
Having structure to the meeting is important. Structure will ensure both you and your students remain on topic and get the most out of the experience.
- The morning welcome: Greet each student as they walk in the door with a warm welcome. This is a good time to tell the students where to sit for the designated meeting spot. If possible in your classroom, have your meeting spot on a rug or area of the room other than their desks. This will bring everyone together and in meeting mode.
- Sharing: Take a few minutes to have each student share something. This could be a show and tell type activity or even just something new and good going on!
- Introduce a fun activity: This is typically along the lines of an ice breaker. The point of having an activity is to have a little bit of fun before starting a more serious classwork exercise. A little later on in this post we’ll talk specifically about ice breakers.
- Morning bulletin : The morning bulletin is the morning announcements. This is your time as the teacher to transition your students from an activity that could get noisy, back to learning mode! This is also your opportunity to talk about objectives for the day or important announcements.
Make it work for your class
This structure may not work the best for your class and that’s okay! Once you find one that works, keep the structure – consistency is key. Additionally, your students will know what to expect and even what to look forward to! The important take away is that you make it a part of the classroom culture and keep it that way.
The ice breakers are an important part of the meeting because it introduces a fun, thought producing activity to get students on track for the day. Some great go-to ice breakers are:
Whisper down the lane – You come up with a somewhat long, silly phrase and whisper it to the first student in line. Then they must repeat it to the person behind them and so on. The last person in line needs to repeat back what they heard. The fun part will be seeing what gets twisted along the way!
Two truths and a lie – This is a fun game that will get your students thinking pretty creatively. They must tell 3 “facts” about themselves to the group. The group then decides which two are truths and which one is a lie!
Introduce your neighbor – This is an excellent activity for the first few days of class. Students pair off and learn a quick few facts about the other. Then, as a group, you come back together and each student introduces their partner to the class.
The options for ice breakers are endless. Continue to add fun games and activities to the meeting. Your students will thank you!