We have read an article about a classroom that had a morning team chat. They would sit on their rug and talk about whatever they wanted to share for that day. They became a team, and a loving community. The classroom that I sat in had little chants that they did that had uplifting meanings to them. At the end of the day they would form a circle and do one last chant that was positive self talk. In it they say that they can do anything, that they are smart. I love that she makes her classroom a safe environment, and you can tell that she really cares about her students.
One way that you can tell that she really cares about her students is by the way that she encourages a positive community within her classroom. She does this by have a big chart on the wall with a clothespin with everyone's names. Everyday every student starts at the bottom of the chart and throughout the day, if they answer something that is hard for them, if they are a good friend, show an act of kindness, or anything positive then they get to 'pin up' and get to move their pin up throughout the day. The people who are at the top at the end of the day get a bead to go on their necklace! She makes the whole atmosphere a very exciting place to be for her students so they want to be there and want to be good.
Another way that this teacher makes it an exciting place to be is by the way she changes from one subject to the next. Like I had mentioned before she has a lot of chants that she uses for her students. She does this to switch subjects. Another thing that makes it very clear is they have a workbook with a different color on the front so she can ask them to get the right color book out and start working on their worksheets. I think this is much nicer from when I was in elementary school. The teacher had to hand out the paper individually, but now this doesn't waste time and the students are in a way taught to self start.