The First 10 Minutes: A Classroom Morning Routine that Reaches and Teaches the Whole Child

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Or you might try something that works well for a week or two, then find yourself sort of dreading it. Be prepared to switch things up and look for new options that feel nourishing to your soul and help you get in the right headspace for the day. After a few months of setting my alarm 15 minutes earlier, I finally got the courage to move my alarm clock up an entire hour.

This finally gave me time to ease into my school day the way I wanted to.


My stress level decreased significantly since an impromptu mini-conference with a colleague the hallway would no longer throw me hopelessly behind time. In turn, I noticed a big change in the level of patience and productivity I had during the school day. If your schedule will allow it even just one day a week, I encourage you to consider arriving at school a bit earlier so you have undisturbed time to think, plan, and prepare for your day. Use your time before the first bell to do things that get you excited about your day — a routine that you enjoy and that gets you in the mindset for teaching.

I had a lot of colorful decorative lamps in my classroom, and though I could have assigned a student the job of switch them all on, I enjoyed walking around my classroom in the morning with the overhead lights off, slowly turning on one lamp at a time. As you know, a quiet moment to sit down at your desk in an empty classroom and listen to relaxing music with a cup of coffee is a HUGE luxury for a teacher, so this ritual was a very special way to begin the day. As I sipped my coffee and ate, I went through my lesson plans for that day and made sure all the materials were organized and accessible.

The school played kid-friendly, upbeat music on the channel until announcements started, so listening to that was the start of my transition into the hustle and bustle that would begin shortly. This might just be an Angela problem, but as an introvert and a lover of peace and quiet, having the classroom instantly transform from a calm oasis into a bustling, noisy room full of children could feel a bit jarring.

I found that standing in the doorway and welcoming kids into the classroom helped me make that transition a little more easily, and it might be a good solution for you, too. I tried to create a habit of connecting with each student. I spent a great deal of time in August teaching students how to enter the room quietly, take care of their own arrival tasks pencil sharpening, getting a drink of water, and so on and then begin their morning warm-up activity.

This freed me to remain by the doorway and continue greeting their classmates as each one arrived.

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By teaching students to always follow the same morning routine, I was able to handle last-minute emergencies, bus incidents, tardies, and so on without throwing the rest of the class off schedule. I recommend keeping the assignments simple and fairly predictable so students can do them independently. Self-selected reading is a great way to begin the day, for example, and lets kids ease into the workday slowly, as well. After all, if YOU have trouble getting motivated to start the day and transitioning into work mode, students certainly have trouble, too! The warm-up could take between 5 and 15 minutes, depending on the type of task, how long it takes students to trickle into your room in the morning, and also how much time you need before the lesson begins.

You can easily extend the warm-up activity to buy yourself a couple of extra minutes if some unexpected demand on your time crops up, and the students will never know the difference. The warm-up allows you to wait to begin instruction until you are completely ready and present in the moment. You can choose your thoughts, and you can choose your habits. Be intentional about creating a morning routine that sets you AND your students up for success. The secret of success is found in your daily routine. Angela is a National Board Certified Teacher with 11 years experience in the classroom, plus over a decade of experience as an instructional coach.

As founder of Due Season Press and Educational Services, she has created printable curriculum resources , online courses , 5 books , the Truth for Teachers podcast , and the 40 Hour Teacher Workweek Club. She's been supporting teachers through this website since Thank you so much Angela for sharing your experiences and wisdom. They will surely add value to my life!!!

Hi Angela! Thanks for this! I love what you said about being intentional. It really keeps me sane. I take minutes before my plan time ends just breath and send out positive intentions. Here are a few other posts that might be helpful. You can also use the categories or search bar underneath to browse by topic and find exactly what you want. Angela Watson Angela is a National Board Certified Teacher with 11 years experience in the classroom, plus over a decade of experience as an instructional coach.

The First 10 Minutes: A Classroom Morning Routine that Reaches and Teaches the Whole Child

Discussion 8 Comments. February 26, August 8, John Andiorio. September 17, October 31, Linda F Gamez. January 22, January 24, March 12, Bulletin Board Ideas , Posters. SmartBoard Morning Routine. It will not work unless you have this software installed on your computer. This SmartBoard file includes the following pages to help make morning routines easier on you! Welcome 2. Timer to use all day if. Classroom Management , Instructional Technology. Activboard Activities. Morning Routine Visual Cards. Are you tired of redirecting the same students to do the same tasks every morning?

Use these morning routine visuals to help keep students on task and stop answering the same questions every morning. Streamline your morning work routines by using these cards as visual cues, to create visual sched. Kindergarten , 1 st , 2 nd.

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Other , Printables. Demonstrate how to start the school day in your classroom each morning. This set contains up to eight steps allowing you enough flexibility to pick and choose which images to use to create a visual for your little learners. You will receive 30 high-quality image files, which includes 15 color image a. PreK , Kindergarten , 1 st , 2 nd , 3 rd , 4 th , Homeschool. Morning Routine Monster. Start your day with a fun and interactive Monster Morning Routine! Activities , Fun Stuff , Interactive Whiteboard. Back to School Procedures for Morning Routines.

Back to School Procedures for Morning Routines This back to school idea is to teach your students the rules and procedures that will help you maintain classroom control at the beginning of the school year: This procedure is focused on morning routines. Included with each procedure is a teacher id. Students will know exactly what to do when entering the classroom with this Editable Morning Routine display. It can be displayed on any screen using PowerPoint.

Simply click in the text box and change the text to match your routine or tasks for the morning. There are 25 different displays. The di.

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Get your students started off right in the morning with this reminder poster. I have this displayed on my SmartBoard every morning and I just write what the task is next to "Start your morn. Not Grade Specific. A consistent, effective morning routine sets the tone for the upcoming school day and prepares students for high quality learning. In this page PDF file I describe a three-part routine that reaches and teaches the whole child. Part 1 introduces the morning check-in, an activity that addresses th.

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Professional Documents. Morning Routine. Yellow Polka Dot theme for your classic morning routine. This includes: morning routine title, hang up your backpack, put away your folder, check for notes, choose your lunch, hang up your coat, go book shopping, and sit and read with a buddy. Two blank ones are also included to make up your own rou.

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Printables , Classroom Forms , Posters. Our Morning Routine Chart - everything you need. This product includes everything you will need to create your own chart for your morning routine. I have included 8. I have also included a sample chart and more explana. Other , Graphic Organizers , Posters. Visuals to support PBIS!

As we all know the first six weeks of school are crucial. At the beginning of the year, we spend all our time introducing routines and procedures. When we focus on routines and procedures, we are providing students with a consistent structure and setting clear expectations. Other , Posters , Task Cards. This system has several phases spanning from pointing at symbols on a communication board, exchanging large cards with symbols or real photo's for the item, and using smaller hook and loop fastener routines and schedules.

PreK , Kindergarten , 1 st , 2 nd , 5 th , Homeschool. Morning Routine Posters that will fit in a pocket chart. They have a picture for kindergarten kids. They are great for Back to School when teaching rules, routines, and procedures, and can be used the whole school year! Back to School. Activities , Bulletin Board Ideas. These morning routine posters can be used to help your students remember everything they should do in the morning when they come in.

Enter the room quietly. Unpack you backpack. Turn in green folder. Get two sharp pencils.