Trying something new in 2017-2018

The inspiration for this post comes from the above statement. I think its so important to try something new every year – sometimes it fails but often it works brilliantly! So here are some things you might like to change in your classroom. These are all very small changes so they should be fairly easy to implement.

ICT

Whether you have a vast knowledge of ICT or find it difficult to use, try something new with ICT this year. Some ideas might include;

  • Recordings of children’s compositions (music)
  • Using programmes such as Scratch to develop children’s problem solving skills.
  • Assessment using Kahoot or Socrative

There are lots of great ICT resources/websites that I outlined here after I completed the Beyond 2020: Using technology in the Classroom course last summer.

Seating

If you follow any teachers in the U.S. on social media – the new buzz word in relation to seating is ‘flexible’. While I think it could be a great idea – I don’t have the funds to purchase lots of flexible seating options for my classroom and honestly I don’t have the space either!

I’ve been thinking of ways to improve seating in my classroom – so here are some options;

  • Layouts – rows, groups, U shape etc.
  • Non assigned seats – this might work in some classrooms – whereby children have different seats every day or can choose their seats during one section of the day.
  • Standing for some activities – could standing for Art be an option?

Outdoor Learning

Last year, we created a Maths trail for the children in our school. We have a lot of different areas surrounding our school – the car park, playground to the side of the school, smaller playground to the back of the school and fields just behind the school too. We created a Maths trail based on this area and the children loved it! It was a fantastic way to develop and revise concepts covered in class.

We made new friend- Sammy the snail! #snail #minibeasts #outdoorclassroom @twinklroi @twinklresources #iteachtoo

A post shared by Irishprimaryteacher (@irishprimaryteacher) on

  • Drawing outside
  • Reading outside
  • Science
  • P.E.
  • Music – listening to and recording sounds in the environment.
  • Maths trail

Homework

As many teachers will know, there is a big debate about the value of homework. When I had 3rd class two years ago, I decided to try a ‘Homework Experiment’. It worked well and I think I’ll try it again with 5th class this year. Basically, the children are given all the homework for the week on Monday and must have it completed by Friday. This gives children and families freedom around homework and it doesn’t need to be completed on a certain day if the child has other activities on or if the child has to go somewhere etc.

Classroom Management

There are so many great options for classroom management. Personally, I like to use Class Dojo. However this year I might also try a group reward system. Pinterest has tons of brilliant ideas that you can use in your room. You might get some ideas from my classroom management board here.

With Class Dojo – I liked connecting with parents and sharing interesting things from the day in the Stories section. It was great for parents to see what was happening in the classroom.

Best wishes to everyone starting back this week! 

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