3 Easy Ways To Strengthen Your Classroom Community by A Word On Third

It's another Happy Teacher Tip Tuesday! Link up (even if it's not Tuesday) by writing your blog post and adding it below. Make sure to visit this page for the rules of the linkup. 

This week's tips are wellness tips that have to do with our emotional health and our students' emotional health! That means you get a double-dose of Teacher Happy today!

Building your community in your classroom does so many things for us. It reduces behavior problems and student stress. It makes the students happier and more willing to take academic (or social) risks. And, my personal favorite... is that it's just darn FUN! I love this part of teaching, and you probably do too. So check out these posts with quick and easy ways to build your community!

1. Play Rare Bird.

The rare bird activity is super fun. It helps your students to find out how they are different and unique. You might also find that your students discover some similarities too! 

You can read more about this community-building activity by clicking on the picture to the left or clicking here.

2. Get rid of fake apologies.

This one really speaks to me. Have you ever heard someone say, "Sorry," with an eye-roll and sarcastic tone? Doesn't that drive you crazy??

Have you ever been forced to make an apology, which in turn makes you want to gouge your eyeballs out, scream, stamp, and give a sarcastic sorry!? Realistically, we've probably been in both positions!

This is something you can teach your students ahead of time that will help out when conflicts arise. It prevents a lot of hurt feelings when used appropriately. Read the details by clicking on the picture to the left or by clicking here.

3. Share each day.

When students regularly have a forum for sharing, their sense of belonging and significance is greatly strengthened. Those two basic needs are a MUST in order for learning to take place. Not only will your students feel heard, but you'll get a chance to get to know your students better too! Whether you are sharing at Morning Meeting, snack time, or at the end of the day during closing circle, make sure to fit it in every day. Partner sharing works well for those days when you feel like you don't have time to have too many kids share with the whole class.

This strategy can help your kids to say more about the topic they are sharing while simultaneously building that child's understanding of main ideas and supporting details. I use this all of the time and love it! If you don't feel like using math tools, substitute them for fingers/palms the way you might teach oral rehearsing during Writer's Workshop. Click on the picture or click here to read more.

What are the little ways you like to build community in your classroom? Make sure to link up (or comment below if you don't have a blog) and spread the happy!

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