I’m not a fluffy teacher. I never have been. I expect a lot out of my students and we are going to get to it right away. During the first weeks of school, I incorporate cooperative learning, procedure practice, expectations review, routines, and “getting to know you” while beginning content. This approach seems much more natural to me than JUST working on “getting to know you” and procedures. Also, students know really quick that we will be working. A space lot.
Here’s how I use my time for one and a half hour class periods for science and social studies.
Day 1 Classroom Stuff
Students complete an Interest Inventory when they arrive.
Welcome students and introduce classroom procedures they may need to know right away (restroom, pencils, getting up/staying seated, talking, etc.). Tell students about myself. Do some “getting to know you”. 🙂
Set up science notebooks. Work on the cover page only. I take the opportunity to explain how to use supplies in my classroom and what a quality cover page looks like. This is the first of 80 million times I will say the word “quality”.
Work on procedures and expectations. Introduce different parts of the room.
Day 2 Notebook Expectations
Warm-up: What is one thing you want your teacher to know?
Review procedures and expectations discussed yesterday.
In science notebooks, make a table of contents, number the pages, and glue in the rubric. As I go through all of this, I’m teaching them how to use supplies. We also thoroughly discuss the rubric and look at my visual rubric.
Review expectations, parts of the room, and work on procedures. Tape Back to School Task Cards around the room and give students an opportunity to walk around, get to know each other, and get to know the room.
Day 3 Working as a Team
Warm-up: Tell me how you will glue something in your notebook while in this classroom. Seriously.
Write our first entry in our science notebooks about the Cup Challenge. Go step by step in how to fill out the Table of Contents, write the title on the top line, skip one line and use sentence stems to describe the activity. Seriously. Step. By. Step. I’m not going to introduce input and output and all that yet. We’re just writing stuff down today.
Set up Social Studies Interactive Notebooks.
Day 4: Safety and Diagrams
Warm-up: What lab role did you have yesterday? How did you contribute to your team?
Review procedures. Introduce “mirror” and “mirror and repeat” based on Whole Brain Teaching.
Start iLearn Science with safety PowerPoint. Record notes in notebooks. Go over how to record notes. It’s like 2 minutes worth of information but we spend about 10 minutes to make sure they know what’s up.
This is the first time they will do “output” in their notebook and it’s extremely guided. I recorded an 8 minute video that shows how I teach students to do quality work.
Day 5 Science Communication
Warm-up: What safety rule do you remember from yesterday?
Set up Vocabulary Notebooks. This is helpful because I have some place to actually store the Weekly Warm-ups that I do starting the next week.
iLearn Communication PowerPoint and Notes
Read Aloud: S is for Scientists and go over expectations for read alouds, sitting on the carpet, leaving the carpet, etc.
Notebook Entry: Glue in Big Money Words page. Teach students one word in context of something we’ve discussed or that has come up that day.
Practice talking scientifically. Use a fancy accent if you want…they like that.
Output: Sentence Stem for how we communicate using formal communication
Do something fuzzy to end the first week. I would probably let the kids collapse because they have to work nonstop to keep up with me. 🙂