Reading this reminds me of the first time I used this in my middle school
classroom. I had written the word on the board in large capital letters,
but did not say anything to the students about what or why I was doing it.
The first time the class got too loud, I walked to the board without saying
a word, took the piece of chalk...tapped on the board a couple of times (to
get their attention), then erased one letter, put the chalk down and walked
away from the board. They got very quiet when I tapped and remained so even
after I walked off.
I would tap on the board each time I went to erase a letter. I never did
end up erasing all of the letters in a class period, but what I was
doing...seemed to be working.
Well...one day, a student raised her hand and asked me..."Mrs. Roberts, what
does all of that on the board mean?" and I had a good laugh...they were
getting quiet and did not even realize that it would mean "no talking" for a
period of time.
Another thing I realized while teaching middle school...that sometimes
whispering or talking very low would get them quiet...because they thought
they might be missing something.
Sometimes, crazy things work with middle school kids.
> Just in time I started reading the quiet sign mails and last Friday I went
> to school with my letters and instituted the idea. I gave my 6th, 7th and
> 8th graders a written explanation of what the new policy is and why. I
> explained the policy and how it will work.