Sunday, August 16, 2015

Back to School Bonanza!!

And the countdown is on! 3 more days until students arrive (for my district)! I'm always a little bittersweet around this time; sad to say goodbye to carefree summer days but also excited for school to start & to meet my new kids! This month's Sharing is Caring blog hop brings you the must-haves to start your year!
The start of the year is the perfect time for rethinking our routines and procedures.  

Homework
Over the years, I've finally found a "tried and true" homework plan that works for me. First is to make students and families realize the importance of time management. Students are given a weekly after-school schedule to plug in their activities and responsibilities.  This forces encourages families to set a specific time to do homework, just as they schedule soccer and ballet. No more excuses for not having time! (Using this schedule also makes it visually evident if students are too over scheduled after school and don't have time to do their homework.)
Each day is assigned a particular subject or assignment. Children like to know what is to be expected; I used to run around willy-nilly copying "something" for homework. Not too meaningful; now there is a set schedule which not only makes it easy for me to plan and prepare, but it also helps to keep kids focused. You can grab your Homework Plan free here or by clicking on the picture below. Included in the plan are a parent rationale letter and other information forms for their homework folders.
To also reinforce daily study habits, I give students a door hanger to color and put on their door (or post in their study area) while doing homework. This reinforces the importance of having a homework study area. You can get your adorable door hangers here or by clicking on the picture below.
Classroom Management
There's a more in-depth post on classroom management coming, but read about some effective and fun ways to utilize music for classroom management!

Curriculum
We all have teacher's editions/guides and district mandates about how many minutes per week we need to teach what. . . But HOW to organize and teach students at ALL different levels? Differentiation. Whether you use a workshop approach or small groups or need meaningful independent work, differentiating content and methods is effective to meet your students' varying needs. Step by step directions are included in Creating Differentiated Independent Work. You can purchase your copy here or by clicking on the picture below.
So many aspects of teaching to think about all the time!! I hope this helps a bit. Have a fantastic start to the new school year!


10 comments:

  1. The homework schedule is a nice way to help students develop lifelong organizational skills. This is also an excellent way for parents to stay abreast of what students are learning in school. Great idea!

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    1. The schedule has been very helpful for families knowing what to anticipate & to plan their time! Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. Love how you have each day assigned for a specific subject. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. That scheduke makes my life so much easier! :) Thanks for stopping by, Kelly!

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  3. Love those door hangers! Makes homework time feel important!

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    1. I'm hoping the door hangers will have that exact effect! :)

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  4. What valuable information you have on this post. I love the homework sheets. Thanks so much.

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    1. You're welcome! I hope it's helpful to start your year!

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  5. You have so many great ideas here. I particularly love the homework schedule to get kids and families thinking about the year!

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    1. Thanks, Marcy! We just started back this week and so far, so good with homework :)

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