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Sunday, February 9, 2014

Whole Brain Teaching- Week 4: Implementing the Rules

Hey ya'll I am back here today to share with you this week's focus for implementing Whole Brain Teaching in my classroom. This week is all about implementing the rules. If you are interested in learning more head on over to Whole Brain Teaching.

Most of this week's focus I have already been doing successfully in my classroom the past few weeks, but I am going to work on improving it this week.

Rule #1:
In order to implement Rule 1: Follow Directions Quickly, you should use the three-peat procedures. I started the three-peat two weeks ago and it was pure magic.

You give students a one word direction (i.e. when you want them to turn in papers say "papers" or when you want them to line up say "line") and students repeat the direction word three times and follow the directions. When I do it I begin slowly counting and they have a certain amount of time to complete it. The amount of time I give is based on what the direction is. This has sped things up in my room and I am not having a lot of wasted dead time. We have actually had time at the end of the day since doing this because we actually get everything done on time. It is F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S!

Rule #2:
In order to implement Rule 2: Raise Your Hand for Permission to Speak, you must first decide if you are serious about it. If you are serious you have to stick to it. This is one I have struggled with and I plan to really focus on improving this week.

When a student talks out without getting permission you call out "Rule #2" and all students should respond with "Raise your hand for permission to speak". After  a while of that if certain students are still having problems give them a silent two fingers and the individual student should silently do the gesture. If after several months that still hasn't worked, practice cards will be started.

Rule #3:
In order to implement Rule 3: Raise Your Hand for Permission to Leave Your Seat you should do the same as you do for Rule #2.

Rule #4:
Rule 4: Make Smart Choices applies to EVERYTHING. In order to implement it you ask students if it is a smart or foolish choice to... (fill in the blank with examples) and have the students give their reasoning. Take time each day to go over some things that might become issues.

Rule #5:
When you want to stop backtalk call out "Rule 5" and students respond with "Keep your dear teacher happy".

For all of these it is important to practice, practice, practice both the wrong way and the correct way. This is the key to success with implementing all of the rules. Rehearse one rule at a time and wait for them to master it before moving on to the next one.

Now for the mastery challenges:
~Rookie level: students master rules 1 and 2
~Pro level: students master rules 1-4
~All Star level: students master rules 1-5 (you have virtually eliminated challenging behavior from your classroom)

For students who constantly do not follow the rules start making them do one minute practices at recess. If they won't do it tell them "It's one minute my way or two minutes your way".

That's all I have for you for tonight! I hope my summary of each of the weekly videos is beneficial to those of you reading.

Goodnight all!
Power to the Teachers!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Common Core Assessment Workbooks

I am here today to tell you about a fabulous resource that has recently been released. Last year I purchased the Third Grade Common Core Workbook and couldn't believe all that was included with it. I have been pulling things from it all year to work on. Next year I would like to have it a little more organized so that I am using it more.

Today I discovered that they have released their Common Core Assessment Workbook. It includes an assessment for every standard, answer keys, and progress reports. I downloaded the Third Grade Sample and was very impressed with the assessments that I saw. I cannot wait to get my hands on the full download and use it in my classroom. I can see this as being very valuable in assessing the standards to ensure I meet all the standards.

My favorite part about this and the workbook that I purchased last year is that there is something for EVERY Math and ELA standard. Sometimes it is hard to find items that meet some of the standards. Those times are the times when I am grateful to have the workbook and now will be thankful to have an assessment tool as well.

I definitely recommend you head on over and check out these fabulous Common Core Assessment Workbooks. They would be a valuable addition to your classroom.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Whole Brain Teaching- Week 3: 5 Rules

I am here bringing you my post on the 13 Week Master Class for WBT. Week 3 focuses on the 5 rules. I am posting about the 5 rules, but my focus this week won't be too much on the 5 rules because  we have been practicing since the beginning of the year and I have already mastered all three levels of the mastery challenge this week. I want to share with those of you who do not know about the 5 rules yet.

Whole Brain Teaching has five classroom rules that pretty much cover every behavior issue you may have in your classroom.

Rule #1: Follow directions quickly (gesture: make your hand swim like a fish really quick)
Rule #2: Raise your hand for permission to speak (gesture: raise your hand and then make your hand talk)
Rule #3: Raise your hand for permission to speak (gesture: raise your hand and then make two fingers walk across your arm)
Rule #4: Make smart choices (gesture: point to your brain)
Rule #5: Keep your dear teacher happy (gesture: frame your face and bob your head from side to side)

It is important in the early stages to practice, practice, practice these rules.

Rookie Mastery Challenge: Review the rules 5 times a day for a week
Pro Mastery Challenge: Have five students lead the rules at least 5 times a day for a week
All Star: Call out the rule number anytime throughout the day when students need a review of a rule due to it being broken; use this a minimum of 5 times a day for a week

When using the All Star level, you are not rehearsing the rules, you are implementing and reinforcing the rule. This is the direction you must take in order to get to Teacher Heaven!

Rule Strengths:
~Rules 1- 3 cover the most common, specific classroom problems
~Rules 4 - 5 are universal and cover everything else that is left

If you are at a school like mine that is a PBIS school, your PBIS rules are included in Rule 4

If you have students who don't go along, create a leadership team of 5-8 kids (no more than 2 rebels). Stand next to the weakest rebel and review the rules, have the leadership team follow your lead. Praise any improvement by the leaders and rebels. If you do this, there is no place for rebels to hide. It is a LONG year so keep this in your back pocket and don't use until you absolutely need to.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Currently February

I am linking up with Farley again after a few months for Currently February.

Stop on over to Oh' Boy 4th Grade to check out all of the other Currently posts.

Here it is:

I enjoy listening to my iTunes Radio when I am blogging/blogstalking. I am a huge country fan so it almost always set to a country station when I listen to it. Even at Christmas it was set to Country Christmas.

I am loving the impact that WBT has had on my classroom over the past few weeks. I do not think I will ever go back. I have felt so inspired since having such a successful day yesterday. I had been following Mrs. Shipley's blog for awhile, but hadn't really gone back to read the posts from before I started following her. Oh man, I did that this weekend and it is a wealth of information. Mrs. Shipley inspires me. She is who I want to be! So if you are reading this, thanks Mrs. Shipley!
If you are interested in her blog head on over to Mrs. Shipley's Classroom.

I have spent most of the day researching Whole Brain Teaching; I just can't help it. I have been so inspired lately. It is now after 8:30 and I still haven't had dinner so I probably should get off the computer and go eat. Of course, I am sure I will be right back to the computer after eating. I have some more research to!

I want my Donor's Choose Project to get funded mostly because I am so excited to try out the stability balls. I have one particular student who I think will benefit tremendously from it. I am hoping this project gets funded soon. I'm about to cave in a donate a big chunk of it since I want it so bad!

I have my pre-evaluation meeting with my principal this week. There is some paper work involved and other things that I need to get organized before then. I need to get that done. For the first time since I started teaching I do not feel very nervous about my evaluation. I am actually very excited because I will be showing off some WBT strategies. I am hoping to get the school on the WBT bandwagon and that starts with administration. Plus my students totally rock at WBT!

2 Truths and a Fib:
1) I have found my true passion with WBT: TRUTH
This one should be a no-brainer. I mean look at this post, I have talked so much about WBT! I have absolutely fallen in love and will never ever go back! Thank you for such a wonderful program Coach B. I'm so inspired lately that I might actually attempt to get my WBT certification.
2) I have completed a marathon: FIB
I have completed three half marathons, but never completed a full marathon. One day I would like to though.
3) I have a condition called neuro cardio genic reflex syncope: TRUTH
When I was in third grade I was diagnosed with this condition. In simple terms, there are times when my body thinks I am dehydrated when I am not and it will just shut down and I will pass out. Third grade was a scary year when I first started passing out and no one knew why. Thankfully I had a great third grade teacher who helped make things a little less scary at school. The cool thing about that is that I am now teaching third grade with her! 
I have lived with this condition long enough that I can pretty much control it now and can avoid the passing out. I do have to be careful about my hydration and making sure I am not standing in one place for too long. I have a stool in my classroom that I use on days when I can tell my body is a little off kilter. 

So there you have it! Head on over to read some more Currently posts!