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Morning Meetings in the intermediate grades

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Morning Meetings in the intermediate grades
Old 08-20-2017, 01:21 PM
 
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Our district requires us to teach Social/Emotional learning every day. Great, I've been doing that for a few years and find it somewhat effective. At the beginning of the year I always start off my day with it. I might not do it every single day though, especially as the year goes on. This year we are required to do our morning meetings and circle time every single day. In 4th grade. There's a lot of SEL I can teach them, but circle time? I've started it and it's going okay, but everything I read about doing these special greetings every day and sharing in a circle on a daily basis sounds overkill, and often times too babyish!! I'm sorry, but going around a circle and greeting each other every day in another language or with a special hand clap sounds like a waste of time.

Is there something I'm missing?


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Old 08-20-2017, 01:39 PM
 
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No, you are spot on. There are too many demands on educators today. Do community circles really help high stakes testing? Good luck to you. I'm retired & don't have to do them anymore.
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Old 08-20-2017, 01:59 PM
 
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Is there direction on how a circle time might look in the upper elementary? If not, I think you can skip some of the more babyish strategies. My favorite 5th grade teacher writes a quote on the board everyday to direct her morning meeting. They discuss the meaning of the quote and then how they can demonstrate/have seen someone demonstrate it in action. I LOVE it. They are quotes from political leaders, Dr. Seuss, inspirational books, etc. The kids have time as they come in to reflect on in, are encouraged to jot down thoughts in a notebook, and then share in their circle.
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Old 08-20-2017, 02:59 PM
 
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I do one everyday - time is tight, but most days I can do it in 15 minutes (some days it's even shorter if I'm running late). I do a greeting, go over the schedule of the day, address any questions (this is also when I bring up any concerns I have about issues in the classroom), and do either a lightning share or have 2 or 3 volunteers share.

It's standard in my school, so the kids are used to it, but they also enjoy it. They definitely have favorite greetings and ones they only tolerate. I find that it marks the beginning of learning, since we go from unpacking and morning work, right into morning meeting and then we immediately start math. I also like that it's a good setting to address positive and negative things happening in the classroom - sometimes it's to remind them of class rules and other times it's to discuss a social issue that occurred at recess. The sharing can sometimes be annoying, but I don't do it on days when I know we have a lot to accomplish and the kids do really enjoy sharing things about themselves.
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Old 08-21-2017, 12:14 PM
 
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I plan on using it consistently for the first time this year. I am hoping that this will help the students ALL feel special and safe in class. After students feel this way they will be more apt to take risks with the academics. I had a lot of bullying issues last year, not in front of me of course. I am hoping this will help solve some behavior issues.


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Old 08-21-2017, 05:02 PM
 
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When I moved from second to fifth grade I was afraid the fifth graders wouldn't be into morning meeting, but they love it. I actually don't do the greeting (the last few years my morning meeting has been in the afternoon)...a few kids sign up for sharing, I do a "did you know?" everyday-I write a random facts on the board and leave a blank and the kids have to guess (ex- In Japan you can buy ____ from vending machines). The kids really love guessing the blank. We also end our morning meeting with the best part-the activity! I hope you can embrace your morning meeting and have fun with it. I find this is where I really get to know my kids!
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Old 08-21-2017, 06:03 PM
 
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Thank you. I love your "big kid" ideas. I also just got the Morning Meeting book for Grades 3-6 from Responsive Classroom and like some of those ideas better than the hokey ones I was finding online. I'll give it a try!
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SPED limit
Old 08-27-2017, 03:02 PM
 
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Hello! Maybe this is a repeat didn't read all the post (ADD). In Ohio the limit is 12 in a classroom at a time, 15 on teachers list and no more than a 5 year age span in the room at same time. They can do waivers for more.
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