This post originally appeared on the blog Spreading Joy One Giggle at a Time.
Hi Friends! I have a quick post for you today, to share some tips and tricks I use in my classroom to keep my students from thinking they are part of a Championship parade every time we step foot into the hallway!
#1… SET THE GROUNDWORK
Ok, so you CANNOT just assume that kids know how to walk quietly and with self-control in the hallways. Even if this is not their first time in school, even if you know who their teacher was last year, and you KNOW he or she taught them how to walk, blah, blah, blah… SAVE YOURSELF SOME TIME AND SANITY… AND DO NOT ASSUME ANYTHING!!! Remember, these are children. Self-control, walking, and quiet are not things that come naturally to children. Chaos, noise, running, and mayhem? NATURAL BEHAVIORS OF CHILDREN! (Do you see what I am saying?)
In my classroom, I am a big believer in using social stories to help support my teaching of classroom behaviors and social skills. So, I use the social stories Walking In The Hallways and There Are Times To Talk LOUDLY And There Are Times To Talk Softly to facilitate strong discussions about proper behaviors and expectations in the hallways.
We talk, and talk, and talk some more! (Notice I said WE talk… not just I talk.) Talking together about the behaviors rather than being talked to about the behaviors is much more effective! That is why I like using the social stories. They are great springboards for discussion.
#3… MAKE GOING INTO THE HALLWAY A FUN EVENT
#4…HOLD THE STUDENTS ACCOUNTABLE
I also hand out Brag Tags for good hallway behavior.
Then there is the Secret Walker. Have you tried Secret Walker in your classroom? If you haven’t, you have got to. THIS is a gem! Ok, so here is how Secret Walker works… In my classroom, one of the class jobs is Caboose. The job of the Caboose is to always be at the end of the line when we go anywhere (we keep the same jobs all week), and to choose and watch the
Secret Walker. THIS IS A COVETED JOB!!! THERE IS NO MORE POWERFUL SITUATION IN A FIRST GRADER’S DAY! (wink wink!)
in, the Caboose student will choose a name out of the Secret Walker envelope.
(NO PEEKING! This is very important, or you will find that friends will only
choose friends, etc.) The Caboose then lets you know who the Secret Walker is but
is not allowed to
tell anyone else. (Revealing who it is before the end of the day is an
immediate loss of power for the rest of the week!)
Whenever we leave the
classroom, the Caboose is then in charge of watching the Secret Walker to see
if he/she is following the hallway rules. At the end of the day, it is revealed
whether or not the Secret Walker did well. (I assist with this process if I
have a particularly difficult Caboose, or know that the Caboose may not be an
impartial judge for whatever reason.) If the answer is YES, THE SECRET WALKER
DID A GREAT JOB IN THE HALLS TODAY, then and ONLY then does the Caboose reveal
the name! (This way we are not ridiculing anyone for bad behavior.) The Secret
Walker gets a round of applause, a slip/poem to take home, and a Brag Tag for
those names out of the envelope until all the names have been pulled. Then we
put them all back in and start again.)
Diane has taught 1st grade for the past 24 years in Sharon, Pennsylvania. Her classroom is a place full of smiles, giggles, and wiggles, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. Diane has a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education, and she enjoys creating fun and engaging resources to get students excited and motivated about learning. You can connect with Diane at her TpT store, on Facebook, on Instagram, on Pinterest, or at her blog Spreading Joy One Giggle At A Time.