Thursday, September 22, 2016

Just Keep Swimming

Most schools in my area have been going for about a month now.

The honeymoon period is ending and students are getting settled in. Teachers have found their groove and established routines.

Now students begin testing their limits.

Students are struggling. Some are falling further behind and behavior problems are starting to occur too often.

Both students and teachers are becoming frustrating. Some students act like they don’t care about anything.

It is about this time that students and teachers feel like giving up.


As Dory says in “Finding Nemo,” – Just keep swimming!

Don’t give up! Just keep swimming. Now is the time to brace yourself and give it some extra effort.

This is the time for teachers to stay firm and be consistent with discipline.

Get to know the students on a more personal level. Find out what their interests are and what motivates them.

Think about your lessons. If they are boring for you to teach them, they are just as boring to learn them. Put some pizzazz in the lessons.

Call home often. Brag about the students as much as you complain about them. This will go a long way in getting parental support when you need it.

In the last 5 minutes of class, have a discussion about hypothetical situations such as “What would you do if you found a $100 bill on the floor?” or “What would you do if you saw your best friend steal something?”

At the beginning of class, give them 5 minutes to write in a journal. They have a choice of writing on a specific topic or how they are feeling and why. I usually require a minimum of 5 sentences but as the year goes on, they usually increase in length on their own. I collect the journals and read them. I correct grammar and spelling and even add some personal comments. The only grade I give them is a check for completing it.

What other suggestions do you have? Please share.

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