Let's get started with Chapter 1. It's a really quick 4 page read, but it is the foundation for everything we are going to study. If you haven't already read through the original text, I suggest you find it and really get a firm grasp on the foundations of WBT. Chapter 1 in this book BRIEFLY reviews chapters 5-12 from Whole Brain Teaching for Challenging Kids.
Major points from Chapter 1 include:
*The Big Seven*
1. Class-Yes! Everyone's favorite attention-getter to calm your class and focus their attention. It has infinite entertainment possibilities, if you just use your imagination! Make the call-outs seasonal, academic based, or just plain silly.
2. The Five Classroom Rules + the all NEW Diamond Rule - a rule for EVERY scenario without posters and posters of lists.
-Rule 1: Follow directions quickly.
-Rule 2: Raise your hand for permission to speak.
-Rule 3: Raise your hand for permission to leave your seat.
-Rule 4: Make smart choices.
-Rule 5: Keep your dear teacher happy. (*More on this in a bit.)
-Diamond Rule <> Keep your eyes on the target.
3. Mirror words - activates all areas of the brain including speaking, listening, motor, visual, feelings, and critical thinking. 100% engagement? Oh sweet mama, yeah!
4. Scoreboard - with all new levels to game-ify your classroom so kids WANT to win the behavior "video game" you're in charge of!
5. Teach-Okay - like think-pair-share, except FUN, focused, and energetic... activating all those neurons again! No sit-and-get here!
6. Hands and Eyes - use this sparingly to make REALLY BIG points, or in cases where complete attention is of the utmost importance.
7. Switch - balancing our Chatty Cathy's with our Silent Susan's.
I promised more about Rule 5. I've heard a lot of teachers say they get grief from parents over this one. It's all in the explanation. Notice that the rule is KEEP your teacher happy, not MAKE your teacher happy. I tell the kids a whole spill about how no matter what happens at home I will come to the classroom happy. Some mornings throughout the year, the kids even get to see me take deep breaths or sip my tea and get myself happy so we can begin our day. Coach B. says that it is the no-loophole rule. Even for those kids who can argue their way out of anything, or think they can anyway, you are the master of your own emotions. They cannot argue with what you feel. Also, Coach B. says that the one true thing that keeps him happy as a teacher is for students to learn. Students learn? Happy teacher! I usually end up with parents creating this rule for their families at home, or at least buying-in to why this is important in the classroom.
Which WBT strategy are you most interested to learn more about? If you have looked ahead (who hasn't sneaked a peek?!), which game do you want to know more about, or which chapter seems the most relevant to your curriculum and grade area?
I am so excited to begin this book study with you! Don't forget to follow my blog so you will get updates, and SHARE!!!
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