My kids would drag themselves into our classroom and groan over another set of sentences to correct. In reality, they didn’t need more math problems to solve, or a crossword puzzle to work out. I dreaded adding another set of papers to be graded. No one enjoyed morning work!!
Teacher Truth: Children at any age are unabashedly honest.
One of my darlings spoke up and said, “They are probably trying to get out of morning work.”
Talk about a gut check. I could’ve answered that a million different ways. But they were right. Morning work was boring and terrible — not how I want to start my day.
I took a breath and said, “Then I guess we need to figure out how to make that better!”
GETTING A SLOW START IN YOUR CLASSROOM
I started by asking them what they would like to do in the morning. I made sure they understood that “nothing” wasn’t an option. I thought about the morning work alternatives I’d tried in the past. They didn’t seem too enthused. 😂 I had heard of “soft start” mornings and explained it to my students. They were ALL IN. We started by making a list of things we’d like to have available in the mornings:
- art projects
Once the materials arrived, there were definite favorite activities that stood out each morning. The LEGO station was always popular, and the books we ordered for inspiration were a hit as well.
The kids also rushed to play with the IQ games each morning. I loved that these were solo activities that they could play while they chatted with friends as everyone trickled in. There are also several challenges for each set, so it was easy to differentiate for everyone in our classroom.