I've been in a kind of a slump the past few weeks. School has been bumming me out. Frustration has been taking over.
I've done two little things in my room that have gotten me a tiny bit out of this slump. They both come down to one little word.
1. During our study hall time, it can get loud. I get grouchy. So, I put together a Grooveshark playlist. I asked each of the students to tell me a couple of their favorite (school appropriate) songs and made a list. I now play that in study hall and it's lightened the mood. It's also a lesson in tolerance of everyone's music tastes.
2. My students share about their independent reading with me once a week. For the last three years, the students have turned in a letter written in their notebook in classic Fountas and Pinnell style. Now I have 3 options for the students. They can turn in their letter, record their response on our new Flip cameras from Digital Wish, or blog their response on our classroom blog. I've already had 3+ students blog their responses and two students record their responses on the Flip. I'm especially excited because the two students who recorded their responses on the Flip are students who usually have late letters. I think the writing aspect of it was hindering them.
This week, my burdens and feelings of burnout have been lessened. Choice can be a little thing that can make a big difference.
What are some little things you do in your classroom to encourage choice?