For The Capturing Kids Hearts Classroom
I’ve been blinded by the appeal of all the cute calendars and bulletin boards. Heck, I’ve spent hours decorating and adding the cute little cutouts to a morning board with the full intention of my perfect class spending every morning going through the calendar, weather, good things, etc. in a quiet little circle. Oh the fantasy! If you are in a special education classroom, or really any classroom, then you know that very few things go according to plan. I quickly switched to a more technology friendly format (i.e. could not be easily destroyed). My new virtual and face to face morning meeting is fun and quick while still being all about capturing kids hearts.
Originally I had an amazing power point with my bitmoji as a weather girl and a chart to graph the temperature changes together. It was a thing of beauty but when the pandemic hit I quickly realized that I needed to stream line thing even further. Clicking through slides for 20 minutes, no matter how cute, wasn’t going to work. Therefore I present to you the bones of the morning meeting – all the best parts- on one easy to click through sheet. Just click on the image below to get it.
All of the icon are for links to different sites on the web that I use to go get the information for our online morning meeting. The calendar links to Starfall’s calendar, which my students love. I have a membership to Starfall because it has alot of great games and resources that I sometimes sneak into our meeting to reteach or even do a pre-assessment on content. Another huge perk is that it is affordable- like $30 for a year. Totally worth it. Especially since it is a huge help for virtual teaching. Ok, soapbox over. The sun link to Google weather and I just have them tell me is it sunny/cloudy./rainy/ etc. I also ask what degrees it is outside and is that warmer/cooler than yesterday.
The daily holiday goes to a site that tells about the crazy holidays for each day of the year. Its fun to celebrate something new with the kids each day. Sometimes I perk ahead so I can make sure to have a costume or some other prop for whatever holiday it is. They get a kick out anytime a teacher looks foolish, and I get a kick out of amusing them so its a win/win. The news link is for a website that only publishes good news. I use to use the major channels but honestly it was killing our vibe. I don’t think I need to explain why. Now we just do the good stuff – its all about the perspective.
All The Good Things
Bonus is that its a good segue into good things. The last several districts I’ve been apart of have all been Capturing Kids Hearts districts. If you don’t know what that is I highly recommend you look it up- its legit awesomeness. I could, and possibly will, write a whole post over the genius of Flip Flippen. I digress. The heart will play the chorus “Tell me something good”. We jam out to this. Get our dance on. Call it a movement break. Its like 30 seconds so its not a huge chunk of time but its fun. For this I pull up the pdf below and let the kids choose something good they did or are looking forward to. For verbal classrooms, it would be fine to have students just tell you their own thing but because the majority I teach are nonverbal I made this choice board.
Its a pretty all inclusive list if I do say so myself. For my students, I print and laminate it. We can pass it around for the kids to choose (wipe after each use). We even pick our good thing off of it too to foster a connection and community. I hope that you come to enjoy it as much as I do. Remember to have fun with your students. Its the best way to show you care.