How do you make a morning meeting work at a distance? I know when I think of morning meetings I still think about circles of kids cozied up together on a carpet. That is definitely still not okay in my school, and I'm sure it's not okay in many others. We are still spending morning meetings at our desks in our own space, but we are trying to build community still! It may not even be okay next fall quite yet, or perhaps some teachers will just be more uncomfortable with physical closeness due to other personal factors. So what do we do? Here are some things that have been working for me mostly during the activity component of a morning meeting.
In this post I explain 18 games or activities that are educational AND appropriate for a socially distanced classroom. These are all intended to be used within content areas. These will get your students moving, interacting, and thinking when they might be stuck at their desks throughout the school day. I hope a couple get you brainstorming!
If you're teaching online/virtually or concurrently/hybrid, I hope at least one of these 15 ideas will inspire you! There are several free templates linked here to get you going. Have fun! Laughter is the best medicine. Spread some love to your students and build that classroom community no matter the circumstances.
I love hands on math activities. While you can purchase games, these are 10 easy structures that can be used for any math content at any level. You just need a few materials to create your own activities for the classroom. I promise it's better than a worksheet!
I love teaching with a workshop model, and I love teaching in small groups. Stations are so much fun to me. I love feeling like the class is shifting in time and being productive. I wanted this virtually, too, but how? I knew what I needed to get started. Here are some ideas for how to get going and what kids can be doing while you're with small groups. I'd love to know how it's going for you, too.
If you're like me, you're teaching online, and breakout rooms are one of the few things that make my online classroom feel real and interactive. Here are 7 ways I'm using this tool and 9 recommendations for gradual release.
As a camp counselor, lover of morning meeting games, and lover of improv games like from the TV show "Whose line is it anyway?" I've curated several fun but structured games to use with students that can be done with social distancing and zero materials other than people and imagination. Have fun!
I love games and activities in morning meeting! While I know that carpet time may be gone as we re-enter classrooms, there are so many possibilities for maintaining connection and community even with physical distance.
Below are songs/chants and activities that I think would work well while staying at a desk space. These could make for great energizers or brain breaks as well. While many of these require standing up and sitting down, they should be able to stay in their area.
One of the first things I wanted kids to have at home while teaching virtually was whiteboards, so I was psyched when my administration planned to make sure every kid got one in their "to go" kit to take home. I love using them in class, and kids love working with them. While whiteboards can of course be used as a replacement for paper, here are 10 specific ways to utilize them.