Winter Break is always a time we look forward to. It is a chance to connect with family, relax, and take time for ourselves. However, after having two weeks off I know how challenging it can be trying to get back into the school routine. I also know that it can take time for the students to get back into the routine as well. When I was teaching it was always important to provide my students with a positive learning environment and create a solid routine. I began researching ways to create a stronger sense of community in my classroom and I came across something called Morning Meeting. Morning Meeting is an engaging way to start each day, build a sense of community, and set students up for success socially and academically. You may be searching for ways to create a new routine in your classroom so check out these classroom routines that I have found to be very helpful for me when I was teaching.
Components of Morning Meeting
- Greeting: When I would start off our morning meeting my students would come to the carpet and make a circle as that enforces eye contact and everyone can see one another. As a facilitator, I would typically choose a way the students would greet each other. For example saying, “Good Morning” in another language, giving a neighbor a high five, or shaking hands. Keep in mind that every student should be greeted and try practicing making eye contact.
- Sharing: I would typically provide a topic for my students for example, “What is your favorite icecream?” and each student would get a chance to share a little bit about themselves. When one student was sharing it was important that the other students were listening to their peers. If a student did not want to share they could say “pass” and we would go on to the next student.
- Activity: My students would always tell me that this part of Morning Meeting was their favorite! This is where we would complete a group activity. For example, my students loved playing the game “Simon Says”. I would have one student stand at the front of the classroom and they would tell the other students to complete an action such as touching their toes, completing jumping jacks, or hopping on one foot. My students knew that they would only complete the action if they heard the words “Simon Says” first.
- Message: Announcements would always come at the end of our Morning Meeting which would include the schedule for the day, special activities, birthdays, or something we would be learning about that week.
If you are not sure where to start with Morning Meeting in your classroom. Take a look at some resources that you may be interested in using with your students here.
What Are the Benefits of Morning Meeting?
The primary goal when implementing Morning Meeting into your classroom routine is to provide a safe learning environment. Some other benefits include:
- Building a sense of trust
- Allows each student to feel important
- Encourages respectful learning
- Helps regulate emotions
- Boosts empathy and teamwork
- Supports all aspects of learning: academic, social, and emotional
Now that you have learned more about Morning Meetings and how beneficial they are why don't you consider giving them a try in your classroom? You may be surprised by the results!