Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Teacher Edit

I believe in the Teacher Edit.

I made time for it in my classroom. (I'm retired now.)

Here's how I would do it. I would say, "Line up for points." (I would have already trained my students to line up in an orderly, quiet row to my right.)

I would sit on my teacher chair at my podium in the front of my classroom and talk with my students as I looked at their homework or classwork. I would look each student in the eye. Then look at their paper and check their work. I would have something nice to say to each student. AND I WOULD SAY THEIR NAME!

"Thank you, Max."

And write down their points. Usually 10 points per page. (Always write it on their paper, too!)

This was always an important part of each class period. Here's why:

  1. I got to see the work standard and output of each student. I could catch big mistakes and/or correct misconceptions.

  2. I could give personal attention to every single student every single day! How many of our students never have a personal encounter with any of their teachers. Don't hear their name on most days? I liked to make sure they heard their name in my room.

  3. It gave my kids the chance to stand and stretch their legs. I know I couldn't sit all day every day like teachers expect!

  4. If someone didn't come up, I could apply intervention strategies to try to get them involved. (More on this later.

Every time they got too loud I would remind them to give me 10-inch voices, please! If they didn't quiet down, I would say something like, "Oh dear, I wish you'd quieted down. Now we have to practice. Would everybody please sit down?" Then I would take out my Line Up For Points transparency and review the entire procedure. "Does everybody understand? Okay, let's try again."

Then they would line up again, and usually they would be much quieter. If not, I would repeat the Training.


Some years, especially when I had lots of kids with IEPs, I would also stamp their papers with a cute stamp. (Smiley Face, Mickey Mouse, you name it.) Each stamp was worth 10 points. This was a tangible reward which lots of kids just loved. BTW, It's better to also write the points down quickly, so you don't have to collect the papers and count points later. Giving stamps is a nice touch for some groups. I've done stamps all the way from 5th graders to 11 graders. So I can say with confidence, STAMPS work great with every age!

FUN LINK: Rubber Stamp Sets from Be Creative Kids

CONSIDER THIS: Use the Teacher Edit, along with Line Up for Points, in your classroom!