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Things you love, or things that work really well, in your classroom

Discussion in 'Primary' started by Rainbow Flowers, Jul 22, 2009.

  1. Winni1,

    Can I ask what sort of aspects you talk about with regards to music and art of the week. I would love to do this in the 5/10 minutes I have before lunch. Just wondered how you get it up and what you talk about.
    A super idea btw, think my Y4/5s will love it!!

    ROSIEGIRL Senior commenter

    Going back to the telling tales issue - I spend time early in the year discussing the difference between telling tales -to get someone into trouble- and reporting, which is telling something which actually needs acting upon because it could be dangerous or is breaking one of our big rules. Then when the children tell tales I just say 'are you telling or reporting?' and they are usually honest enough to realise the difference. The incidence of tale telling usually declines quite quickly!
    I love this thread by the way - such a good idea to share things that really work for real teachers and real children!
  3. Had a lovely time browsing your website - great work!
    Karate maths sounds great - how do you play it?
  4. winni1

    winni1 New commenter

    Hey miliiebear and cbdixon,
    Basically I let the children look at the art and then we talk about it as a class. (Usually on a Friday and then as and when during the week. We use the music to get changed for P.E.) I do a bit of leg work before hand so that I can answer thier questions and give then info as we go along. But, if I don't know an answer then I am totally honest about it and we either look it up together or that is a job for them to do at home etc. It is very powerful for them to see that you are learning too and they come to realise that not knowing something is ok as long as you want to find out.
    Here are some questions I many use to get them thinking:
    What might it be called? Did a man or a woman make it? How did they make it? (eg oil paint, photo, stone...) Why did they make it? What do you think about it?
    I let them have their full say and their own opinion of the art and the music as long as they can justify it. Their, "It is nice" is always followed up by my," Why?" I teach infants so it takes a few weeks for them to get the hang of it but when they do it is an empowering thing. I swear their reasoning skills and language come on in leaps and bounds.
    I hope all that made sense! Post back or email me: firoach@btinternet.com if I you want any more help. Good luck and go for it!

  5. Can I add some classical suggestions for music that in my experience children respond well to:
    - Stravinsky - The Rite of Spring (it's long but has short subsections - very imaginative colourful music with lots of rhythm in it - good questions include what it describes, what part of the world it might be from, what is it for (it's a ballet), what does it make them feel like)
    - Holst - The Planets (fits brilliantly with anything planet related or anythign related to classical gods and goddesses - very descriptive music eg Jupiter bringer of Jollity; Mars bringer of War etc)
    - The procession / ballet music from Act II of Aida by Verdi - fits with an Egyptian theme as that is where the opera is set - bascially it's the music whilst a triumphal procession is performed, so you get bits that are the soldiers and the dancing girls and even a short bit describing the capture prisoners - generally this is quite a good opera 'for starters'
    Must dash, but those are my first few thoughts - will think what else and add later if it's useful

  6. winni1

    winni1 New commenter

    It is dead easy! I get the children silent and then say,"Add" (or whatever). They make the sign with their arms as quickly as they can. It is really funny to keep doing two, one after the other then throw in a third and see who you can catch out!
    We do finger karate and the full blown event most maths lessons because it is great for kinesthetic learners and is a fun way of getting it 'in!' Finger karate is ideal for using at your table when you are trying to record a sum...especially if you're 5!
    Glad you liked the site, thanks for the feedback.

  7. winni1

    winni1 New commenter

    Thought it was time to stop taking over rainbow flowers wonderful thread and start one of my own for Art and Music of the Week.
    This thread is brilliant and I love it but feel free to check out winni1's art and music of the week-ideas bank, and contribute any ideas you have. [​IMG]
  8. My year 4's absolutely loved Maths Karate to- often used as a O/M starter with a range of vocabulary. They were always requesting it!
  9. Thank you winni1, what a super idea. I can't wait to begin it wiht my class as I know they haven't done anything like this before.
  10. Absolutely love this!
    I have used 'The Hat' (http://www.harmonyhollow.net/hat.shtml) for choosing names or groups. The kids love it - whenever I said that the children would be working in pairs or groups they wanted to use the hat! It only picks out individuals or pairs, but if I wanted a group of 3, I would just pick 3 individual names. The children never complained about who they were picked with - even when there were some interesting pairings!
    Someone also mentioned a learning journal, I did something individual during the year, I gave each child an exercise book, one with lines on one page and blank on the other and asked them to make a note of what they had learnt during the day - writing or drawing. I found it quite hard to always find the time, so it evolved a bit - ended up sometimes doing it in the mornings about the day before, or using it for news or free writing. I was amazed at how much the children wrote when they knew it wasn't marked as such (I just put my initials in their book about once a week). Most that drew pictures to start with ended up doing some writing too - even the relunctant SEN boys in my class!
    Another little one linked to some of the music ones is PSHE songs, eg Fischy Music. I have discovered the children love singing and dancing along to them. It is a great little filler, they sing along when changing instead of chatting, and when it came to the class assembly we chose one as the basis for what we did! - Finally a reasonably stress free class assembly!
  11. Thanks for this, Anotherteacher. I've just downloaded it and the children will love it!! No more arguments about who's paired with who!!!
  12. winni1

    winni1 New commenter

    For those lovely children who lock the loo door and slide out under it...
    Find a blackboard duster and tap it along the floor under the door. The guilty party will end up with chalk down their front. Have used this many a time and the beauty is that it wipes off so there is no lasting damage!
  13. Love that Winni not sure ours do that but thinking do lot of other things that chalk dust could help with[​IMG]
  14. Do you by any chance have anything to do with the selling of the smartsack expert?!!
  15. Just what I was thinking. A hard sell always puts me off. Now if they were 50p a sack, then I might be interested.
    Does anyone know where you can buy ready cut-out letters for displays, say about 10 cm high?

  16. Yes me!!!!!

  17. Great thread!!!
    Each year with a new class I do a Compliaments task. Every pupil is given a piece of paper and write their name at the bottom. The paper is then past around the class and each pupil has 30 secs to write a compliament about that person. The kids enjoy reading what has been written about them and gives them a boost. I then display them so that they can see what was said about them if they are having a bad day.
  18. early in the year I teach the children (y1) the Macarena. Once they have mastered the moves we then use it as a starter in maths, counting up in ones (there's 12 beats) counting down, counting down/up from another number, counting in 2s, 5s, 10s. reciting the days of the week, months of the year. One year I invited parents to stay on after they brought the children in and let them do the dance while we watched.
  19. winni1

    winni1 New commenter

    Brilliant! And also good to see someone found a use for that song [​IMG]

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