It is already that time of the year, summer break is coming to an end and the new school year will start soon, really soon … After traveling to Belgium and Switzerland, attending iFLT19, presenting on literacy in World Language classes, going on weekend getaways, and Disney trips with the kids … I am just not sure I want my summer to end just yet …
Fortunately, back in January I came up with 4 goals for the second semester (see picture below).
These goals – community, classroom management, motivation, literacy – will now be my main focus points as I start a new school year or new semester. I’ve added a 5th focus point – data – and will keep on editing as needed 🙂
As I take a closer look at these 5 categories, I realize that they would work best when implemented together therefore creating positive ripple effects or negative ones when not used simultaneously – for example, without building classroom community and buy-ins, our classroom management plans will be (not impossible but) more difficult to implement, which also might result into lower motivation from students and from the teacher’s part as well, … and vice versa – without a strong, consistent, and clear management plan, it also affects our classroom community, students motivation, and our lesson plans become more and more difficult to teach as it becomes more and more difficult to reach students.
I strongly believe that these 5 categories or 5 focus points should be seen as a whole, all 5 together for the best positive outcomes for our students, our classes, and for us as teachers from day 1 until the very last day of classes.
You should be able to click on the titles below for more ideas for each of these categories – real soon, ideally. Note that these reflections are exclusively based on personal experiences from my own classes including ideas borrowed and adapted from other teachers.
Here goes ~ 5 focus points to implement from the beginning of the school year:
#1 Build classroom COMMUNITY:
Making sure that everyone is seen and heard, feels valued and supported in our classroom throughout the year and on a daily basis through many different class activities is of extreme importance to me. In this post I’ll share a few things I do, and a few ideas I’ve “stolen” and adapted from other great teachers in my classes to build relationships with students for a stronger classroom community!
#2 Be consistent with classroom MANAGEMENT:
Is it possible to have my dream classroom? According to Michael Linsin in his book “Dream Class”, absolutely! There are so many excellent books out there on classroom management – in this post I will share a few things I consider as I begin a new school year, semester, or as I am getting ready to set or re-set the norms in the classroom.
#3 Help students find their “inner” MOTIVATION:
What motivates teachers? What motivates students? This category won’t be that easy to write as we all have different intrinsic motivation that drives us; as I continue to reflect I will share a few ideas that have helped my students in the past.
#4 Promote LITERACY in the target language:
As teachers, we all know and understand the importance of reading effectively; but how do we create a community of readers from the start? Here I’ll share a few things I do to make reading part of our everyday routine and a few goals I have set for myself.
#5 Collect DATA:
Last year, I started collecting data for different purposes and perspectives: (1) for the teacher to adjust classroom lessons (2) for the students to self assess and track their goals (3) for parents to keep being informed and involved (4) for administration to have a bigger picture of what is happening in classes – and I hear it makes admin. happy 🙂
What else would you add to this list?
5 focus points to implement from the beginning of the school year:
#1 Build classroom COMMUNITY #2 Be consistent with classroom MANAGEMENT #3 Help students find their "inner" MOTIVATION #4 Promote LITERACY in the target language #5 Collect DATA