I am linking up for another wonderful Bright Ideas Link Up! If you have not seen these link-ups before, let me tell you, they are great! Every single post includes an idea that you can use in your classroom. Best yet ALL the ideas are things you can do right away that do not include any kind of purchase or download. Just simply bright teachers sharing bright ideas!
Why are teachers 'ideas people'? Because we are engineering our environment to achieve optimal learning for a group of people! That requires LOTS of knowledge, skill and craftsmanship. And we are constantly modifying what we do to get better results! Ideas pop into our head all through the day.
Some are very simple, but make our life - So. Much. Easier!
The idea I want to share with you is one that I use in Kindergarten, particularly in the first half of the year.
It will help your students to:
- recognise their name
- learn to write their name properly
and it will help YOU to manage the classroom. All your worksheets will be accounted for, and you will not need to plan any additional 'name writing lessons'.
This came about because here in Australia, our students must learn to write in a very particular handwriting style - it is part of our curriculum. Our students come to us from preschool or home and have often just learnt to write their name, in their personal 'signature' kind of way. We need to work on getting them to change it to a neat 'handwriting' style. Some students may not even know how to write their name at all and need to get the basics of letter formation.
It also came about because I was quickly getting tired of always reminding my class at the time to "write your name on the back of the sheet". "Turn over, and write your name on the back of the sheet". Turn it over. You, at the back, yes you. Turn it over. On the back. Your name. Write your name. YOUR name. The one on your desk. You can just copy it. Here. There. Look, that is your name. Write it. Here, on your sheet. It goes there. Yes you can. Just try. Ok. Just write the first letter. On the back......Pick up your pencil.....arggghhhhhhhh"
OK, so you get the picture. Now - repeat that ten times.
I decided to make a class set of traceable name sheets. I just opened an MS Word document and typed my students names out in a tracing font. One name per page. I typed each name so it was on the top right hand corner of the page. Then I printed them out.
I kept the 'class set' of traceable name sheets in my teacher-bag in my teacher-bible organiser type folder book that I use every day.
Whenever I made a copy of ANYTHING for my students - worksheets, notes, homework etc. I would first photocopy the set, then put the whole set back through the copier and photocopy their names onto the BACK of the sheets.
So, a worksheet would have their work on one side, and their name to trace on the back.
When it came time to hand out the sheets, I could hold them up and get each child to recognise their own name. They first trace their name on the back, before doing their work.
Much easier! My sanity was saved! The children were learning the correct formation and handwriting style EVERY time we did a sheet of they got a note to take home.
A bonus was that any student that was away also had their work labelled already, to catch up later in the week.
Simple. Easy. But this will make a HUGE difference to your week and your students' learning!
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For more great ideas - check out some of these amazing blogs!