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Good Behavior Motivation in the Classroom-Surprise Message and Sharing of Dreams -by Connie Limon
Summary : As a substitute teacher you will need to have as many tricks and devices as possible to help motivate your students toward good behavior. In this article I will share a few that have worked well.
As a substitute teacher you will need to have as many tricks and devices as possible to help motivate your students toward good behavior. In this article I will share a few that have worked well.
For second grade to fifth grade:
Upon arriving to the classroom create a multi-sentence message. The message can be anything related to what the students are studying if you have adequate information from the regular teacher. If not, then create a message containing a joke, riddle, short children's story, etc.
• Write the number of blanks that equal the number of letters in the message including all punctuation marks
• Throughout the day when you observe students behaving well in any form such as helping each other in the classroom, or being extra attentive to lessons, taking turns with other students well, etc., that student earns a letter on the message in which you write upon the board in the appropriate place
• At end of day allow students to have turns guessing such as a wheel of fortune type game any remaining letters and punctuation needed to fill in blanks
• When message is complete everyone discovers there is a surprise within the message that reveals a special event such as an upcoming visitor to the class, a class play, etc. Since you are in a substitute role you will have to make the surprise something that will either happen when you are there or something you know is going to happen for that particular class sometime in the future.
• You will also need to explain to the students what the game is all about. You can call it the "surprise message," or the "mystery message," or "because you have been so good reward." The goal is to motivate all students toward behaving well to learn what is hidden in the message on the board at the end of the day.
For second through sixth grades:
Dream sharing used as an inspirational activity is usually a winner within this age group. You will need to carry the book, My Brother Martin: A Sister Remembers Growing Up with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by Christine King Farris and Chris Soentpiet in your bag of tricks and treats.
• Sometime during the day read aloud from the book.
• Start the discussions with your own childhood dreams.
• Express to the class how dreams start in the hearts of children just the same as adults.
• Ask the children to complete a sentence starter revealing their heart's dreams.
• Hang their papers on a wall in the classroom.
• For this activity, you might ask the regular teacher if it is okay to hang these papers and where she will allow this (will have to be done before you arrive to this particular classroom).
• As the year progresses and you return to this classroom, refer back to their dream statements posted on the wall, and ask them what steps have they made toward this particular dream since you last saw them, or how has their dream changed, or have they moved completely away from this particular dream.
• Try to engage the students in a discussion regarding their dreams.
I am a substitute teacher for kindergarten through high school in local area schools. Please visit my website for more articles at http://smalldogs2.com/SubstituteTeacherTips.
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