Tuesday, March 18, 2014

SMALL Visuals Making a BIG Difference

Do you have students who ask you the same questions every day? (I do!).  Do you find yourself reminding your students of certain things every day? (I do!).  Here are some quick and easy solutions which can solved these problems QUICKLY in my classroom last week!

I was getting so tired of the question "Where do we have recess today?"  "What time is my break?" "What special do I have today?"  Now, don't get me wrong…my kids have a schedule which answers most of these questions.  But, their schedules are in a binder which is stored on a shelf…I guess the extra step of going to the shelf and opening the binder was too much.  So…to solve this problem, I posted a general schedule on the outside of the bookshelf to make it more accessible.  When I showed my students this, one of my students literally thanked me for it!  I put all of the things my students ask about regularly in color…I also added a recess schedule below.

I was also getting tired of reminding my students to turn in their homework every day.  I printed out a quick reminder and posted above their coat hooks.  A few weeks ago, I was verbally reminding the kids every day to turn in their homework.  Once the visual was posted, I only had to remind them once that week!!

Lastly, I was extremely tired of seeing this mess of a shelf where my older students store their schedule/morning group binders.  My kids basically just through their work and binders anywhere on the shelf and it was a hot mess.  And being a little OCD, it really bothered me that this shelf is located right inside the door…so everyone has to see it when they enter the room.  

So, enter the amazing power of visuals.  I made binder label only big enough for the 3 binders that need to go there.  I also labeled the 2 blue bins for "drawings" and "work" and filled in the rest of the space with other materials.  

At the end of the week, this is what my shelf looked like!  I only had to show/explain the visuals once, and then the rest of the week, my shelf was in tip-top shape!

Adding these visuals was such a great thing for my classroom.  Not only does it allow my students to be more independent (because I don't have to remind them of everything) and teach them organizational skills, it also saves me time (and reduces my frustration!).  These visuals are really a win-win situation for all of us!

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