Creative classroom management strategies from fellow teachers and our experts.
I ask questions and have students respond by making certain movements to show their answers. It’s a great way to incorporate movement and whole-class response.
The Next Alex Trebek
I made up a game I call “Stand Up If You Know It.” During math class, I’ll write out or say a problem, and students will stand up if they know the answer. Then I’ll wait a few seconds and call on someone who is -standing. It’s a good mental-math review, and if you keep it fast-paced, students are up, down, up, down, so it’s a good break!
Surf the Web
gonoodle.com. It has great short videos for calming brain breaks as well as energizing ones.
Spare Some Time
One of my math centers is a “bowling” center. I use it to work on counting at the beginning of the year and subtraction toward the end. By incorporating centers and lessons that get the children up and moving, you won’t need movement breaks as often.
Clap Along If You Feel…
I like to pop in “Happy,” “The Hokey Pokey,” or other videos and let the kiddos dance. I have older kids, so I try for an afternoon brain break.
Whistle While You Work
I use [movement breaks] during transitions. For example, I have a cleanup song. It’s a couple of minutes long, so kids can clean up, boogie a bit, and be seated and ready to go by the time the song ends.
2 x 2 = 4 Jumping Jacks!
I saw a cool thing when I subbed in a second-grade classroom. The kids would all stand and the teacher would pick someone to call out a times table and a movement to do with it, such as touching toes or jumping jacks.
Hop to It
I have students move around as needed. For example, I will ask them to jump 10 times or hop on one foot while they go get a new pencil.
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