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Lesson Plans

First Grade Art on A Cart

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Tue, 3 Dec 1996 12:43:02 -0600 (CST)

Hi Sally, I'm way behind on reading my artsednet mail, so you may have
already been innundated with replies, or this may be redundant, but I
thought I'd reply. I also teach first grade art, though not on a cart
(have been there and done that too, though). On the first day of class I
teach my students my "signal for attention"; what I will do when I need
them to listen to me. I explain via discussion, questions, etc. that when
I say "may I have your attention please" they need to STOP (whatever
they're doing) LOOK (at me) and LISTEN (to me). and,when do they need to
do these things? right when I say it. For how long? until I tell them to
return to work.... I demonstrate (act out being a student responding to
the signal) then have one table demonstrate. During class I interrupt them
frequently to practice the skill. i continue to reteach it every week for
a minute or two to make sure they all know it. It only takes alot of time
the first week; after that, they really get it, and all I have to do is
give the signal and they stop and listen.
I.e., I don't just tell them a statement, or yell out words--I TEACH them
exactly what the behavior is that I want (i.e., stop what you're doing
right now and listen to me). We had a wonderful classroom management
workshop in our district taught by Ernie Stakowski. It sounds like alot of
work, but for me it has been time well spent, because it WORKS. When I say
the statement, they stop and listen. I also use a reward system where I
give the students stars for following class rules; they have three on the
board when they enter the room (you could put them on the board when you
enter a room); if there are problems I erase a star; at the end of class I
record how many stars are left on a chart. When the class earns 15 stars
they earn an art award (could be some kind of sticker, or often I reproduce
a small line drawing i've done; something like that); when they've earned
30, we have a "popcorn party" which means during the next class, at some
point during class I give them each a dixie cup of popcorn. Then we start
over. Sounds like bribery, and I had some misgivings at first, but the
kids love it--and it works. I have very little discipline problems in my
classes--I get to teach art, which is what its all about, right?
Well, that answers part of your question, if you're interested and have any
questions, let me know.

Mary Holmgren
Orono Minnesota